India: Sensing the urgency to strengthen police infrastructure across the country to meet day-to-day law and order challenges, the Centre has approved continuation of special schemes to modernise police forces in states worth over Rs 12,000 crore and earmarked nearly 20% additional funds for its ongoing ”Mega City Policing” plan for Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata and Ahmedabad.
These proposals were approved by the Union Cabinet in its on February 7. States will, accordingly, be given Rs 12,378 crore for the next five years till 2016-17 to modernise their police forces.
Nearly Rs 432 crore of this will go exclusively to seven metropolitan cities under the ”Mega City Policing” (MCP) plan. The fund will be used by these cities to procure modern equipment like GPS/GIS for ”Dial 100” systems and patrol cars, CCTV systems, vehicle scanners, vehicle number plate identification systems, cyber patrol and communication monitoring systems and integrated GIS-based automated vehicle tracking and management systems.
Though the fund approved by the Cabinet does not appear to be substantial considering the enormity of the task before the states to improve police infrastructure, the sanctioned amount is nearly 20% more than what the states had got in the 2007-12 plan period.
The Modernization of Police Forces (MPF) scheme is a non-plan scheme where the Centre provides funds to all states to improve mobility and procure weapons, communication systems and other equipment on share basis.
While Jammu and Kashmir and all northeastern states including Sikkim get 100% assistance from the Centre under this scheme, the remaining states get 75% of the project funds from the central government.