Govt wants image make-over for police stations

Existing police station buildings are “ambience-wise pathetic, space-wise inadequate and cleanliness-wise extremely poor” and government wants an image make over for such facilities.

It is now preparing uniform guidelines for police station buildings and has sought opinion from stakeholders for improving the draft made by Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD).

The draft is being prepared keeping in mind Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of SMART Police, a senior official said.

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According to the ‘Draft Concept Paper of Guidelines/Norms for Modern Police Station Buildings 2016’, it is important that all new such buildings should be so designed that people feel at “ease and comfortable in terms of space, cleanliness, functionality and privacy” and police personnel can perform their “duties smoothly”.

Though the space earmarked for police stations in metro, major city, semi-urban and rural areas are different, all such facilities should have certain common facilities.

It should have disabled friendly entry, separate toilets for men, women and disabled, women help desk, rest rooms and toilets for personnel.

There should be a separate office room with an attached toilet for women personnel while an attached individual rest room should be there for Station House Officers and Inspectors who work for long hours.

Lockups should be provided an internal toilet with low walls, whose edges should be rounded. It should be monitored through 24X7 CCTV.

Police stations should have a gymnasium besides separate recreation room for personnel staying in the barracks. Also, a room should be there where police can counsel the complainant on small matters.

It also talks about adopting a uniform colour code on external surface of buildings throughout a state would make it easier for a common man to easily recognize police stations.

The draft also talks about police stations in insurgency hit areas — eight feet high parameter wall, barbed/concertina wire fencing over boundary wall, watch towers, blocks on approach roads to police station, CCTV scanning, alternate communication system and emergency alarm system.

“In India, today, many police station buildings are not suitable as far as optimum functional requirement is concerned. There is a need to provide functional spaces as per present requirement for smooth working of police personnel,” the draft said.

The government is revising a 2005 document prepared by CPWD, School of Planning and Architecture, Delhi and Karnataka Police Housing Corporation to ensure that the changed times is reflected in buildings, the official said. The concept paper was first put out last year and revised later with further inputs.

(An edited version appeared in Deccan Herald on Sep 21, 2016)

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