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Bihar, UP worst in policing, south states placed better: survey

The five states with the highest score on overall policing — IPF Smart Policing Index 2021 — are Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Assam, Kerala and Sikkim. From bottom upwards are Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Punjab.

BIHAR HAS scored the lowest in overall policing, followed closely by Uttar Pradesh, according to findings of a nationwide survey conducted by independent think-tank Indian Police Foundation.

Southern states and some in the Northeast fared better on most policing indices compared to states in the north. The top five states with the highest score on overall policing – IPF Smart Policing Index 2021 – are Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Assam, Kerala and Sikkim. From bottom upwards are Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Punjab.

The national average of satisfaction with the police has been found to be at 69%.

“The survey is an attempt to assess the performance of various states on PM’s Smart Policing initiative. While it is heartening to see 69% people being satisfied with policing in the country, we hope wherever there are flaws, this survey will motivate states to do better,” said Prakash Singh, chairman of Indian Police Foundation and former DGP of Uttar Pradesh.

Retired IPS officer N Ramachandran, who is the president of the foundation, oversaw the conduct of the survey, which reached out to more than 1.61 lakh people across the country over the past five months through both online and offline efforts.

The survey had 10 sets of questionnaires, which included six indices of “Competence-Based Indicators” dealing with issues such as police sensitivity, accessibility, responsiveness and technology adoption among others; and three indices of “Value-Based indicators” dealing with integrity of the police; and one index of “Trust”.

Bihar and Uttar Pradesh fared poorly on almost all categories.

On a scale of 10, Bihar scored the lowest in five categories: 5.98 in “Public Trust in Policing”, 4.97 in “Integrity and Corruption-Free Service”, 5.81 in “Technology Adoption”, 5.84 in “Police Responsiveness” and 5.75 in “Police Sensitivity”.

Uttar Pradesh has scored the lowest in three categories: 5.59 in “Helpful and Friendly Policing”, 5.27 in “Fair and Unbiased Policing” and 5.80 in “Police Accountability”.

In overall policing, Bihar scored the worst with 5.74, followed closely by Uttar Pradesh (5.81).

While Uttar Pradesh DGP Mukul Goel was not available for comment, ADG (Headquarters) Bihar Police J S Gangwar said he could comment only after reading the report.

He, however, said, “Bihar has been a well-performing state despite all challenges, given the kind of resources and infrastructure we have. It has a grassroots presence and good urban network. More measures are being taken to modernise it.”

In Fair and Unbiased Policing category, the best performing states are Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Assam, Kerala and Gujarat. From the bottom are Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Nagaland and Jharkhand.

In Helpful and Friendly Policing, the best performing states are Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Assam, Sikkim and Kerala. The worst are Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Nagaland.

In Police Accountability, the top states are Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Assam, Kerala and Odisha, while Uttar Pradesh, Nagaland, Uttarakhand, Bihar and Chhattisgarh are at the bottom.

People from Bihar, Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh had the least trust in police, according to the survey. Those from Andhra, Telangana and Kerala trusted the police the most.

“There were two striking findings of the survey where those who had had no contact with the police [in the past five years] had a poorer perception of them compared to those who had. Also, with almost one third of the population being dissatisfied with the police, it is a huge number that we must take cognizance of,” Ramachandran said.

He added that the survey had its limitations given the sample size for such a huge country and also responses from different states not being even. States and Union Territories such as Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Ladakh, Chandigarh, Lakshadweep and Dadra and Nagar Haveli were not included in the report as they returned less than 300 responses.

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