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From Our Correspondent, Shillong News | Tura, May 15, 2018:

The plight of the lower rank policemen and the prevalence of nepotism and favoritism in the police department was on Tuesday highlighted in an anonymous letter, allegedly sent to the chief minister of Meghalaya, apparently by a group of policemen.

This letter has virtually opened a can of worms within the police department highlighting the nepotism in postings as well as promotions while also highlighting the condition of the men in uniform in lower ranks.

The letter named various senior level policemen while also seeking answers from the state on the continued state of corruption in police rank and file.

Congratulating Conrad on his party’s victory in the recent assembly elections as well as for ‘bringing’ changes to the state, the aggrieved policemen hoped that the CM would pay attention to the ills faced by the policemen as well.

“What was the need of extension of the term of the current DGP, when his only contribution was the protection of the interests of the previous CM and protecting them against many cases and his interests in coal through many of his own officers,” said the anonymous letter.

The policemen also came down upon an ADGP (name withheld) who they accused of forcing them to work as his domestic help.

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“He has been in the same place for many years now and knows just how to punish them and use them at home as he does in the office,” they added.

Another AIG (name withheld) has been accused of similarly using policemen as his orderlies.

“He is in charge of postings and transfer and no posting or transfer is possible without his consent and as such no posting is possible without him being paid first. The applications from policemen are just dumped otherwise. We would like to request for a uniform policy of transfer based on merit within the state and grievances of police personnel should also be heard,” they added.

Another AIG was also mentioned, who according to the policemen was the one helping in manipulation and as such had become indispensable for others. She allegedly has been posted in the same place for over a decade now.

“They are using us more as bonded labour rather than as men posted to protect citizens of the state. Our services are being misused. We request that the above 3 officers be posted out of police headquarters (Shillong) for the betterment of the morale of the police and also to prove that they are not indispensible,” said the letter.

Pointing to the state of vehicles in police stations, the policemen stated that the condition was such that it could break down at any time.

“That is why many of us reach places late. Even the vehicles given in the name of police modernization are given to officers who use them as their personal cars (who themselves have 2-3 cars),” they said.

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Meanwhile the aggrieved policemen have asked the CM to order an inquiry into the matter stated by them but only through an honest police officer to take the corruption out of the department. They hoped the new government would take the matter seriously for the sake of the state.

Meanwhile, another police source added more to the allegations saying, “Just look through all the postings in various districts. These are mainly given to people who are close to the top brass or to politicians.

“They stay on lucrative routes (coal) for decades and make their stash while the honest officer is shunted to places you may not even have heard of. Just check the transfer lists of policemen. The good ones will get transferred every 6 months,” said the source on condition of anonymity.

He further asked to check as to how many people were posted in the districts but were attached to PHQ.

“If you are in good terms with the posting and transfer department, you may be posted in SGH but will be attached to PHQ which means you are working in PHQ but drawing salary from SGH! Just check the sanction strength versus actual strength of PHQ and compare it with the districts and you will find the difference. The manpower in the districts is weak,” said the source.

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