In a major cleansing operation, Commissioner of Police (CP) Arup Patnaik has shunted 97 long-serving assistants of senior police inspectors from various police stations to the Local Arms unit, which can be termed as a punishment posting. On May 31, along with the other transfer orders, CP transferred 97 orderlies (constables, sub-inspectors), readers and drivers who have served for long time under senior inspectors.
Ideally, every police constable who has completed six years at a police station should be transferred, but in the recent diktat constables with postings less than one year were also reshuffled. Sources at the commissioner’s office revealed that these orderlies serve one particular senior police inspector and thus become his confidante, often helping to keep an account of his bosses’ ill-gotten wealth.
Bribes and raids
“It is a major drive to eradicate corruption within the force. By staying in one police station for many years, the orderlies develop networks with people who approach the police station, and eventually start collecting haftas from them. It was found that these orderlies also settled disputes using their bosses’ name,” said a senior police officer, on condition of anonymity. Recently the commissioner had issued a circular and demanded a list of all the orderlies posted in the police stations across the city.
As per the circular these orderlies who had access to confidential information were found to have leaked pertinent information to criminals for monetary benefit. Hoteliers and other influential persons had even bribed many of these orderlies, in order to receive advance information of police raids.
After receiving the list, Patnaik zeroed in on 97 such tainted orderlies and transferred them to the Local Arms unit. Several disgruntled constables, however, are now unhappy with the order and have approached the Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal (MAT) court to seek justice. A constable, who has approached the MAT court, said, “One who intends to build a nexus can do it in any manner. Mass transfer is not the solution.”
According to orderlies, many of those who have been transferred have not even completed one year in the posting. “If the commissioner still wishes to shift us he should transfer us to another police station. Transferring us to the Local Arms unit is disgraceful,” said a constable from a South Mumbai police station who has received transfer orders.
“Few orderlies of senior police inspectors were transferred for administrative reasons,” said Nisar Tamboli, spokesperson of Mumbai police.