Bigger issues waiting for Mumbai police

Mumbai police has done it again. Whether it is the arrest of Palghar-based girls for a Facebook post or the case of cartoonist Asim Trivedi, the force has made sure to have its finger deep in one controversy or another.

Earlier this week, Bhoiwada police swooped down on the hapless cancer patients and their relatives living outside Tata Hospital in Parel, with an incredible excuse. Of all the migrants who arrive at Dadar Terminus and loiter in the streets of Dadar and Parel, cops believe that these patients —who occupy the streets in the absence of proper accommodation — pose a serious security threat to the hospital. The Bhoiwada police, who should be focusing more on the rising street crimes in their area, have instead trained their guns on these hapless patients and their families, a move that could damage the image of the police force.

Increasing crime in Dadar and its adjoining areas have always been on top of the agenda in all meetings addressed by the police commissioner. With Matunga gaining notoriety for chain snatching, Dadar and Parel are proof of the police’s incompetence in curbing street crime. In such a scenario, serious policing on the streets is rare in these areas.

Not just in Bhoiwada, the entire police force seems to have lost its focus on street patrolling, which was stringently implemented at the time former police commissioner Julio F Ribeiro. Ribeiro worked hard to bring about a qualitative improvement in policing in the city.

Under the guidance of some of the best police commissioners that the force had, the force had achieved ranks comparable to the Scotland Yard. Can we have those days back, please? 

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