Threat to High Court, call ACP of Forest Cell

Nov 04, 2011, 06:41 IST | Mohammed Yacoob

Despite being transferred to the CID-Forest Cell in 2009, ACP Murali continues to get calls on his number whenever a security issue crops up around the High Court or Vidhana Soudha, as his number is listed against the name of the new ACP of central division

Assistant Commissioner of Police M K Murali is a man on a mission to save the precious natural resources in the state and has even spelled doom for sandalwood thieves and ivory poachers in the city.

ACP MK Murali's number in the official police officer list 
is displayed along with ACP K V K Reddy's name

However, he is tired of answering the phone each time an emergency situation develops in the Central Zone comprising Vidhana Soudha, Karnataka High Court or anywhere in the immediate vicinity, because of a severe oversight on the part of the DCP PRO, which is in charge of updating the official list of city police officers.

Despite being transferred to the CID-Forest Cell in 2009 and being relinquished of his earlier duties, which entailed securing these important locations, Murali continues to receive calls from people seeking information or help at all parts of the night or day, simply because the database has not been updated with his current posting or job description.

Though Murali's name has been removed and replaced by current ACP K V K Reddy's in the official list, which is available to the general public, his mobile number was not removed.

Risk factor
Failure to rectify this error could result in the loss of crucial time and if a genuine threat ever crops up, innocent lives could be lost as a result.

Murali has over time come up with a standard answer to such calls and the same applies to everyone, including top government officials, police personnel, members of the judiciary and media persons.

"My dear, I am not responsible for securing the Vidhana Soudha, High Court or Chinnaswamy Stadium," is what he says and according to him, the lists still shows his number as the first official to call in the event of a threat or security issue around these areas.

Murali told this reporter, "Instead of just dealing with poaching, ivory and sandalwood theft, I also have to answer calls that are no longer relevant to my duty area."

Though M K Murali's name has been replaced by current ACP K V K Reddy's name in the official list, which is available to the general public, his mobile number was not removed

Murali recently busted a gang at Yelahanka and recovered ivory valued at Rs 20 lakh and he seems to be finding the calls a disturbance to his mission of global importance.

"I have lost the overall count of the number of calls I have received pertaining to issues regarding security. On Wednesday alone, I received 77 calls pertaining to the hoax bomb threat at the High Court complex," Murali said.

According to senior police officials, the website of the IT-city police department that was meant to be top-class, is not up-to-date as the database is obsolete. The list of phone numbers and designations of officers has changed, but not been regularly updated since 2009.

"I have brought up the matter with the officials concerned  when Shankar Bidari was commissioner, but nothing has happened, Murali added.

Interestingly, he had even personally appraised K V K Reddy about the matter, but that has not been able to instigate rectification of the error.

"After I took charge of my new department, I told Reddy that I have been receiving calls meant for him from time to time. He has not shown any interest so far, which is surprising.

Whenever I get a call, which sounds important, I provide Reddy's landline number to the caller. Imagine what would happen if no changes are made and there is an actual emergency situation and I am unable to answer the phone," Murali said.

Not a big issue?

The DCP PRO responsible for making the necessary changes downplayed the mistake saying it was not a big issue and that a request would be sent to the officials concerned to initiate rectification.

When a call was made to Reddy's landline he answered and said, "Ask the higher officials why. I cannot say
why my name is put on some other phone list."

In demand
In July 2010, Murli received 51 calls when Naveena, a lawyer, was slain by her jilted lover at the

High Court.

Received 10 calls when farmers protested in front of Vidhana Soudha on November 1 this year.
Conducted a sting, after which he managed to get 7 metal detectors installed at High Court.
After the stint, the staff strength in his High Court and Vidhana Soudha office, which was 12 shot up to 52.

Singing cop

Murali has been singing for the last 17 years and is interested in retro songs.
Recently performed at Kyra and paid tribute to Rafi on his death anniversary.
Trained with a noted Hindustani singer, Ahmed Saab, and will be performing at the Police Day function. 
Has also participated in a popular television music reality show.

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