Traffic cops to get lathis for self-defence

Taking cognisance of the increase in cases of assault on traffic cops, the police commissioner is planning to arm them with batons so they can defend themselves. The police have also started applying the Maharashtra Prevention of Dangerous Activities (MPDA) Act 1981 on those who assault them.

 Traffic constables
Unarmed: Traffic constables until now were not provided with any weapons leaving them vulnerable to attacks from the public. Representation pic

The Act allows cops to lock up offenders or potential offenders for anywhere between three and 12 months without bail.

In September, two constables were attacked on duty. One of them was Constable Parshuram Gaikwad, attached to the Pydhonie traffic division, who was assaulted by a group of bikers.

He had stopped them from entering a flyover on their bikes as two-wheelers are not allowed on it. Another constable Bharat Ghuge, who was manning LBS Marg in Bhandup, was hit on the head by unidentified attackers.

“It is usually senior policemen who have and use weapons, not police sub-inspectors or constables. We now want traffic constables to have batons and will be giving them to all of them,” said Satypal Singh, commissioner of Mumbai police. “It is the traffic constables who usually face the wrath of the common public; they are the ones who interact with the public and are the face of the police,” said a police officer. 

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