In a first in the decades of the history of Jammu & Kashmir Police the new Director General Police R R Swani in a landmark decision has announced it publicly that he will be personally hearing the grievances of the people twice a month . The conduct of public grievance darbars by Police Chief himself is undoubtedly a path breaking initiative which none of the predecessors of Swain had taken even during the times when people wanted them to hear their genuine grievances under pressing circumstances. The announcement of the conduct of public grievance darbars by DGP himself has sent out a message that while Police won’t spare wrong doers to reduce the trends and tendencies of social crimes in the current era of digitisation but it won’t also allow any unnecessary harassment to the innocents. While this path breaking decision of the incumbent DGP would also give people the sense of accessibility, the police authorities looking after matters of crime and investigation would also tend to respond to the grievances of people more promptly and effectively. Though DGPs, Range IGPs, Range DIGs and district SPs also used to hear the grievances of the people both at their offices and as well as during their field visits in yesteryears but there was no schedule for public grievance darbars either at Police Headquarters or at the offices of Range IGPs, Range DIGs and district SPs. Establishing a monthly schedule for public grievances in the police department would also hopefully set a trend for the introduction of certain practices and procedures for redressal of public grievances at the police stations at the grass roots . It is just possible that Station House Officers (SHO) at Police Stations are asked to forward grievance redressal reports to their higher ups for their final disposal in the office of the Director General Police at the police headquarters both in Srinagar and Jammu simultaneously.
“After the announcement of two public grievance darbars on monthly basis by the DGP it is quite possible that Range IGPs, Range DIGs and district SPs would take a queue from DGP and also announce the decision of holding public grievance darbars twice a month in the jurisdiction of their own areas and introduction of any such practice would institutionalise transparency and administrative accountability in the J&K Police Department.”
True it is that Government has already established a full fledged Public Grievance Department at the Civil Secretariat both in Srinagar and Jammu but establishing a separate system of public grievance redressal in the police department and more so in the office of Director General Police would further ease the process of the redressal of public grievances concerning police in Jammu & Kashmir. After the announcement of two public grievance darbars on monthly basis by the DGP it is quite possible that Range IGPs, Range DIGs and district SPs would take a queue from DGO and also announce the decision of holding public grievance darbars twice a month in the jurisdiction of their own areas and introduction of any such practice would institutionalise transparency and administrative accountability in the J&K Police Department.