Livestock rearing in police lines gets top cop's goat

May 25, 2012, 07:28 IST | Sandip Kolhatkar

To improve state of colonies, city police chief orders her men to stop keeping goats and chickens that earn them extra buck

Policemen from the lower ranks living in the 13 city police lines have been ordered to stop raising livestock — goats, poultry and even cows have been found — in the open porches adjacent to their official quarters. The orders have come from the Commissioner of Police.

Many policemen have been found making an extra buck on the side to support their families in these difficult, inflation-ridden times by rearing livestock on the police lines premises, but now Commissioner of Police Meeran Chadha Borwankar has warned such police families that strict action will follow if these activities continue.

No more of this: A mutton and chicken centre on the premises of the Shivajinagar police lines; (inset) poultry on the premises. Pic/Krunal Gosavi 

No renting out
Those who rent out their official quarters to persons from outside the police force have also received a stern warning. Saying illegal deeds by the very people meant to maintain the rule of law will not be tolerated, Borwankar has asked officers to take stern action against policemen found renting out their official quarters.

The recent orders were issued after taking cognizance of the abysmal condition of the various police lines that house the rank and file of the force. The city police chief’s orders are aimed at improving hygiene and living conditions in the police lines.

Borwankar has issued strict guidelines to police inspectors and the various officials of the Public Works Department (PWD) in-charge of the different police quarters, and she wants these to be followed in letter and spirit.

The 13 city police lines are in Shivajinagar, Bhavani Peth, Somwar Peth, Khadak, Swargate, Gokhale Nagar, Bodygate, Khadaki, Vishrantwadi, Indrayaninagar, Kaverinagar, Bhosari and Pimpri.

About half of the city police force lives in these official quarters, and it is no secret that the police lines are highly unhygienic and ill-maintained.

Officers to keep tabs
In the guidelines, the city police chief directed those in charge of the various police stations and the police quarters to look after maintenance work like supply of electricity, sewage water treatment and cleanliness and submit a report on monthly basis.

“On monthly basis, the line in-charge officers will be giving surprise check to the quarters and will make sure that no one from outside the police department is residing at the quarters and will be submitting the report to the concerned police station inspector,” states the order.

Borwankar warned officers and those in charge of police stations that if during her inspection somebody from outside the police department is found to be living in the quarters, the police line in-charge and the police station inspector concerned will be held responsible and face disciplinary action.

The officials will also make sure that no police family defaults on the electricity bills and the line in-charge will personally see if the bills have been paid or not.

In the order, Borwankar has also asked the families of the policemen to maintain cleanliness inside as well as outside their quarters.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a few police constables and members of their families vented their frustration over the pathetic condition of their living quarters.

“During the rainy season, it becomes very difficult to stay in the house as the rain water leaks from several places in the roof and we have to keep utensils to collect the water,” a police constable said.

Another constable said the PWD was responsible for the maintenance work but was turning a blind eye to their woes.

“Nobody comes here to check the dilapidated condition of the police quarters, so there is no one we can go to and complain about the dismal condition in which we are forced to live in,” he said. 

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