More criminals in IPS than in constabulary: Kerala DGP

Thiruvananthapuram: Triggering a controversy by saying that there were more criminals at the officers’ level than in constabulary in the police department, the outgoing Kerala police chief TP Senkumar, who took the state government to the Supreme Court after he was removed from his post unceremoniously, has raised serious concerns of bureaucratic system.

Senkumar, known as an upright officer, made the controversial statement at the farewell parade accorded to him at the Police Ground in Thiruvananthapuram. He said if the number of criminals in the lower ranks was 1%, then it was more than 4% in the higher posts in the Indian Police Service.

The police force was facing more threat from within and not from outside, he said. “We must adhere to laws first and then only make others obey laws. Otherwise, we can’t enforce laws effectively. Officers must give top priority to present the case in a better way in the court rather than how media portrays the case,” he said, exhorting officers not to toe any line while investigating a case.

All policemen must have their political affiliations but it should be kept away while discharging their duty, he said, adding that the politically-biased should not get any place in the force. He said in the nearly two months since he was reinstated as the director general of police, some officers with criminal background unsuccessfully tried to vitiate his relations with chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

He wound up his brief speech saying he would continue to work for the welfare of the public. After the Left Democratic Front (LDF) government came to power in 2016, the first action it took was to transfer Senkumar. The government cited the “mishandling” of the murder case of Dalit law student who was brutally killed in her home in Kochi last year and the “inept handling” of the Puttingal fire tragedy in which 110 people were killed as the reasons behind its decision. But Senkumar moved the apex court, challenging the government’s decision.

The court ruled his transfer was arbitrary and not in accordance with the established norms. His reinstatement last month after an 11-month legal battle invited embarrassment to the government which in turn made his two-month stint in office troublesome. After his reinstatement, the LDF government posted controversial IPS officer Tomin Thachankerry as his deputy to keep a tab on him. Loknath Behra will take over as the Kerala DGP from July 1.

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