Saturday, February 14, 2015

Our Police Deserve more Respect from us.

First it was Charlie Hebdo shoot out in France. Charlie magazine has been a target of Islamic terrorist for many years. Guarding any person, organisation or area, round the clock, day after day is a difficult task. Police forces have to be alert 24x7 while the initiative of when to act and timing of such act are the great advantage the attackers have. Despite difficulties, since it was a known target, the protection provided could have been better. In that case, some gunmen come, shoot at will and get away may not be surprising for a random target, however, when the attack on a target known to have been marked,  goes through with impunity, becomes a cause of worry.

Similarly, a cafe in Copenhagen hosting a free speech event has been attacked. It was known that the event will have discussions on free speech in some of the religions. Lars Vilks, a Danish cartoonist already under threat was present. The value of attack on such object for attackers is high because it gets them what the crave for  the most, instant and global publicity. Marginal credit is due to Danish police and intelligence who had taken some measures and were guarding the venue and did fire back,  unlike in Paris attack. But the fact of the matter is, gunman (as it is being told that it was one armed person who carried out the attack not two as was thought initially) could reach the venue unhindered and could execute the attack shows the inadequacy of the preparations by the guarding forces.

On the other hand, India has faced terrorists of all hues for many years. Sometimes, who is or what is on target of one of the fringe group, becomes known through intelligence but most times the attacks are without warning. Also the sheer array of lunatic groups acting against our country is an added difficulty.

Indian police have managed the security and protection well so far. That too with police modernisation not progressing, manpower shortages and too many guarding assignment (it can be acutely evident in Delhi).

They seem to sanitise and hold a area which contains probable target. They seem to be concentrating on stopping the attacker well away from his objective. Extremely difficult task but they are at it and have managed it well.

It does inconvenience all of us. We (including me)  grumble about it. Excessive searches of attendees of an event,  road closures and Bandobast, etc. Well we grumble but if something happens and attack goes in, we also are vocal in criticising them.

Let us, for a change and against our ingrained beliefs which may be right or wrong, accept that our Police forces, despite severe limitations, are doing a far better job compared to many other forces across the world including forces of advance countries. We may continue grumbling but let us also be truthful and give credit to our police forces, who, with limitations and with probably one hand tied behind their back for various reasons, are doing a very great job.

They deserve much more Respect (capitalization is intentional) then we accord to them,  at least on this issue. Let us recognize this fact and look at the man on bandobast or frisking duty, closed up for hours in the heat or cold, with the due respect,  without any prejudice  to our right to indulge in our national pass time,  'grumbling'. 

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