This picture is published in a Bengali magazine, “Desh” (17th July 2009, page 75). This is about an ongoing police operation in recently famous (for leftist extremism) Lalgarh area in West Bengal state in eastern India. Is there anything in that picture that strikes you? Apparently not, if you are habituated with daily lives in India. But look closely. You can see a paramilitary force personnel holding an assault rifle wearing a towel around his neck, typically worn by common people in some areas in India. A police personnel wearing a fancy, American style trousers with big side pockets. That cannot be an approved police uniform. Two other police officials are doing their duties with buttons of their shirts wide open. Is this a picture of a state owned, disciplined armed force and that too during an on going operation?
This picture seems to indicate the present status of India. Lawlessness. By the way, the article was not about police indiscipline. There is not much difference between underworld criminals in action and that of a state owned police-paramilitary force. These police and paramilitary personnel have no sense of discipline, no sense of duty. No sane Indian expect these "professionals" to be disciplined. These people know very well that no one can take any action against them, as the higher officials are even less disciplined, less accounted for, and lost almost all moral high ground to punish such “simple mistakes”.
It seems that Indian police-paramilitary is nothing but state owned criminal gangs, devoid of any discipline, duty towards the nation and its people and above all no accountability. Reports of police abuse appear regularly in news media. Our political leadership routinely promises police reform but nothing happens in reality. Today no sane person prefers to go to police and ask any help, even to report any crime. General people are showing increasing tendency to take laws into their own hands. Police abuse give rise to more anger and give birth to many more terrorists and extremist as compared to any ideology (e.g Islamic terrorism, Maoism etc.). Indian police live on with its pre-independence mentality and brutality; always reminds our colonial past.
Indian policy makers should remember that development of few people cannot be termed as development of the country. One of the main parameters for a civilised nation is to provide an environment of security and affordable and speedy justice. But such a police force can never help towards that goal but can only make things worse.