Hot wheels! Mumbai cops may soon have this swanky new ride
Prepare to be awed if you see Mumbai cops bullet past you on this flashy new mean machine. The force is about to test the prototype of a police bike, which can revolutionise the way cops work while out on the street.
Designed by a Vasai-based automobile designer, the bike, a modified Royal Enfield, is equipped with hyper-functional tech specifications built in to ensure that policemen perform their duty with ease and speed.
Gabriel Zuzarte, designer of the machine
Gabriel Zuzarte, designer of the machine, recently received clearance to get the police department to give his bespoke model a spin.
“I have received a no-objection certificate (NOC) from Mumbai’s Regional Transport Office (RTO), which has given the go-ahead for the bike to be used as a test ride for Mumbai police. If this project gets approved, you will get to see it on the city’s roads very soon,” said Zuzarte.
The vehicle has all that a cop would require while handling cases on the field, bringing them at par with their counterparts in the developed world. Describing its features, Gabriel said, “The bike has three boxes attached.
The top box is equipped with a laptop and printer that will help cops register FIRs on the spot. To the right is a box with a router, inverter and plug points for the systems, while the left-side box can be used as storage. Cops can even carry cloth and bandages in case they have to ferry any injured people or handle bodies on the road,” Gabriel added.
So, whether it’s imposing a fine on errant motorists or taking them in custody on the spot, this bike will enhance their capabilities to work efficiently, without having to run around to fetch things. The bike has night-vision cameras attached to the front and back of the bike.
The cameras can be viewed by police officials sitting in a control room. The footage from the cameras is recorded on hard disks attached to the system, and streamed to a central control room where other officials can monitor it.
Zuzarte modified an Enfield Bullet Electra Twinspark and replaced it with tubeless tires. “The Enfield is supposedly the heaviest Indian bike. I have added around 20 kilogram of weight to the existing mass. The vehicle was tested for speed with the additional weight, and there is hardly any difference,” he said.
Several other accessories such as fire extinguishers, high-power LED flicker lights, portable first-aid kits, slot to hang batons, a siren-cum-announcement speaker with a high-range torch are add-ons.
Zuzarte said that it took him almost two months to manifest this dream bike into reality. He started working on the two-wheeler in the first week of January, and by the second week of March the bike was tested on the road. It cost him R5 lakh to add all the features to the bike.
He got the brainwave while watching Discovery channel one day. “In one of the documentaries on the channel, I saw that Paul Teutul, Sr, owner of Orange County Choppers, a world-renowned company for customised bikes, had made a unique bike for the local cops.
The department appreciated his work. That was the time I decided that the Mumbai police deserves a similar vehicle,” Zuzarte said.
It’s what cops want
So he got to work. He started with research, speaking with several police patrolling teams to understand their on-field requirements while they handle cases and integrating them in the design.
“The minutest requirement was given the deepest thought. Like, when I spoke to the cops about the walkie-talkies they use, I came to know that its power lasts only six to eight hours. Keeping that in mind, I made charging points within the bike, so that there is no need for the staff to run around for charging their walkie-talkies,” Zuzarte added.
Zuzarte, who did not have the funds to get his project moving, had to take help from his mother-in-law. “My mother-in-law sold one of her houses in Vasai and gave me Rs 5 lakh to start with the project.”
Green light awaited
Zuzarte has been in talks with the home department and the police force to bring his vehicle in the police department. In 2012, Gabriel met the joint secretary of the home department, PT Gaud, who suggested that he should get the vehicle tested from the department and get the RTO’s clearance.
Soon after, Zuzarte met Deputy Commissioner of Police Atul Patil of the Mumbai police’s motor vehicles section, who assured him that once the road clearance is allotted, the vehicles would be used on the roads on a trial basis. DCP Patil said, “He is supposed to bring the motorcycle to us. But, all this will require the approval from Mantralaya.”
>> Compartment on top for laptop and printer to register FIRs
>> Box on right equipped with a router, inverter and plug points for gadgets like walkie-talkie
>> Storage box on left
>> Night-vision cameras at front and back
>> Bright LED flicker lights
>> First-aid box for accident victims etc
>> Fire extinguisher
>> Public announcement system that doubles up as a siren
>> High-power torch
>> Slot for a lathi
Popular police bikes abroad
Honda Goldwing Airbag: One of the costliest bikes, used especially for highway traffic patrolling in the US
Yamaha FJR1300: High-end sports bike with electronically controlled clutch and gear shifting; used by cops in Australia, the Netherlands, Denmark.
BMW Rs 1200RT: Features a 1,170 cc flat-twin engine, popular in the UK
Amount he spent on building the bike
Weight he has added to the existing weight (185 kg) of the bike