Naxals to Malin, these trainee cops have seen it all
Training to be part of the Maharashtra Police, one of the largest police forces in the country, is no cakewalk.As many as 100 trainees in their 20s found this out the hard way, when they were posted for Lok Sabha election duty in Naxal-infested Gadchiroli, which was quickly followed by being part of the relief-and-rescue operations post the Malin landslide.
The trainees, who will get their postings soon, were part of two teams involved in the rescue operations for four days each. Their trainer, riding the bike, was present throughout the operations
On Sunday, their last day before leaving Malin, mid-day interacted with some of them. “Two teams of trainees were here for four days each. I was part of the second contingent, and our main task was to remain present at the landslide site, maintain law and order and ensure that nothing untoward happened. We have been working 12-hour shifts,” said Shashikant Patole (25), who hails from Nagpur.
More than forty houses were swept away in the Malin landslide. File pic
Since the past nine months, the 100-odd men have been undergoing training at Police Training School (PTS) in Nanvij, Daund tehsil. Their training is in the last phase, and they will get their postings as constables soon.
Anil Bodke (26), who is from Mumbai, said, “In the training institute, at least five hours are reserved for physical activities, including drill, running and exercises. Hence, despite being involved in strenuous rescue operations here, none of us fell ill or had any health issues,” Comparing the experiences of Gadchiroli and Malin, Ramdas Mane (29) said, “At least there was no risk to our lives in Malin.
In Gadchiroli, we were posted in the interior areas in the jurisdiction of Ghot Police Station.” “We had to constantly carry our SLR rifles with us, and were equipped with 100 rounds of ammunition. An exchange of fire was reported just 20 kilometres from our patrolling area,” he added.
PTS Daund trainer Vikas Pondkule, who was in Malin throughout the rescue operations, said, “All these guys are fortunate, as they got tough assignments like Malin and Gadchiroli in their training period itself.
I am satisfied with their performance in the relief-and-rescue operations. This experience has boosted their morale and it will definitely help them in their upcoming service tenures.”