MANGALDAI, Jan 10 � The ethnic clashes of 2008 that originated in the neighbouring district of Udalguri, left over two lakh innocent common people of both the Udalguri and Darrang districts homeless, compelling them to take shelter in relief camps. More than 65 innocent villagers from different communities and religions lost their lives. Again in 2012, both the districts survived the same sort of group clash situation mainly due to the tough stand taken by the administration and the police with active cooperation from the peace-loving conscious section of the society, brought the situation under control. But how far is the State government and the Home department serious about the sensitivity of the district which, though comparatively smaller in size and area, is considered as one of the highly vulnerable districts of the State? It will be hard to believe that the district police is functioning without the Additional Superintendent of Police (HQ) since the first day of the new year? The Additional Superintendent of Police (HQ) Diganta Chowdhury on his promotion enjoyed his release on December 31 and accordingly joined as Deputy Commissioner of Police, (Security and Intelligence) in Guwahati Police Commissionerate on January 1.
It is more surprising to note that the important post of Deputy Superintendent of Police (HQ) in Darrang district has been lying vacant since February last after the transfer of Md Hussain who had joined as Deputy Superintendent of Police (HQ) in Jorhat district. Till January 8 before Ujjal Barua, Additional Superintendent of City (Traffic) Police joined in place of outgoing Additional Superintendent of Police (Border), Darrang, Rup Kishor Handique, the Superintendent of Police, Darrang Vivek Raj Singh has been rendering his service like a one-man army with the help of the Deputy Superintendent of Police (Border) Deba Ranjan Sarma, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSB) Keshab Phukan and Deputy Superintendent of Police (Probationary) Dr Rashmi Rekha Sarma. The Chief Minister, officials of the Home department and the high profile Director General of Police Khagen Sarma perhaps are least concerned with this sorry state of affairs in the Darrang police administration.
On the other hand, the district police in Darrang, like other districts, too has been facing acute shortage of officers in the rank of Sub Inspectors in seven police stations including the ASEB police station, five police outposts, three watch posts and the lone patrol post in the district. A total of 29 Sub Inspectors against the total sanctioned strength of 35 posts are functioning in the district who are over burdened with their load of works which has caused tremendous hardship in prompt and proper investigation besides tackling the law-and-order situation. As per available information, the number of cases in each PS of the district has been fast increasing over the last couple of years and on an average each PS registers around 500 cases in a month. According to official sources, as per government policy a Sub Inspector can be entrusted with a maximum of five cases in a month for the sake of the prompt and proper investigations. However due to the acute shortage of Sub Inspectors in the district, at present, one Sub Inspector has been compelled to investigate about 15/20 cases per month.
The people of the district have demanded immediate increase in the strength of the Sub Inspectors in the district. Fortunately for the people of the district in spite of the acute shortage of officers, Superintendent of Police Vivek Raj Singh, in his second tenure in the district, has shown tremendous leadership quality in controlling his police force with his people friendly but uncompromising approach of administration.