"Police officers are never 'off duty.' They are dedicated public servants who are sworn to protect public safety at any time and place that the peace is threatened. They need all the help that they can get".
The police are a constituted body of persons empowered by the state to enforce the law, protect property, and limit civil disorder. Their powers include the legitimized use of force. The term is most commonly associated with police services of a state that are authorized to exercise the police power of that state within a defined legal or territorial area of responsibility. Police forces are organizations separate from any military forces, or other organizations involved in the defense of the state against foreign aggressors; and military police are military units charged with civil policing.
Law enforcement, however, constitutes only part of policing activity. Policing has included an array of activities in different situations, but the predominant ones are concerned with the preservation of order.
"The police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full time attention to duties which are incumbent on every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence."
Madhya Pradesh, in its present form, came into existence on November 1st,2000 following its bifurcation to create a new state of Chhattisgarh. Reorganization of states led to the formation of state of M. P. on 1.11.1956 comprising of the erstwhile central province of Bhopal, Madhya Bharat & Vindhya Pradesh.
On the day of its birth the state had a complement of 252 Gazetted Officers and 39785 Non Gazetted Officers and men covering 739 Police Stations. Six posts of DIG were created in the new state. The post of DIG of Police SAF & DIG of Police Admin. were added later in 1958 & 1959 respectively. 23 new police stations were established mainly in the dacoit infested areas as part of a larger scheme to strike a decisive blow to organize and arrested dacoit gangs. Strength of the Distt. Executive Force & the SAF were augmented, keeping in view the law and order situation with the State.
To keep pace with the needs of a fast developing state, the Indian Police Service and State Service Cadre were suitably expanded. Existing Police Regulations were revised with a view to ensure uniformity of police working throughout the state. The administration of the Police throughout the General Police District invested in the IG of Police and his assistants at the PHQ. During these years, the M.P.Police force saw 12 Inspectors-General of Police and the up gradation of IG's post to Director General of Police .The first IG of the new state was Shri. B.G.Ghate, who was succeeded by Shri. K. F. Rustamji in 1958.
Madhya Pradesh has a sizeable population of Scheduled Tribes and scheduled castes, who have remained cut off from the mainstream for centuries. Most of them lived in abject poverty under sub-human conditions, and were exploited by the society in general.
With the emergence of social-justice as a major concept in our democratic policy, old laws relating to the underprivileged classes were reviewed and more empowering social enactments were introduced by the parliament. At the same time, the role of police began to be conceived, not as mere enforcement machinery, but as the agents of social change.
Consequently, it was enjoined on police to play a more decisive role in the implementation of social laws. The Government of Madhya Pradesh, recognizing this change and realizing that normal police structure will not be sufficient to play the desired role, created specialized police set-up for this. Consequently, a separate Anusuchit Janjati Kalyan Wing (AJK) was created in 1973, and special AJK police stations look into the complaints of SC/ST persons and investigate cases registered on such complaints. The network of AJK police stations works under a separate ADG level officer and form a very important constituent of M.P.Police today.
The most important problem which the new State of Madhya Pradesh had to face was the growing menace of Dacoity in the northern districts of Chambal ravines and the north eastern districts of Chambal ravines and the north eastern districts of Bundelkhand.
The problem of dacoits in these areas was rooted in the history of its people, the nature of terrain and the primitive life of vendetta. When the new State of Madhya Pradesh came into being, these areas were swarming with formidable dacoit gangs.
As a result, the fabric of law and order in that area was steadily weakening. Under the stewardship of Shri Rustamji, a scheme was drawn up for strengthening the Police force and improving wireless network in that area. The implementation of the scheme, coupled with the guts shown by officers and men, paid rich dividends and leading dacoit gangs: namely Putly, the Bandit Queen Phoolan Devi, Amritlal, Roopa, Gabbar, Kalla and Lakhan Singh which were synonymous with terror.
Similar success was achieved in Budelkhand area where dreaded gang of Moorat Singh and Chaliraja were liquidated. The good work done by the State Police was recognized and complimented by the president of India, Dr. Rajendra Prasad on the occasion of the ceremonial parade held at Gwalior to honor the Police Units taking part in these operations. The dacoit menace was not completely eradicated, but the backbone of the problem was broken and in about a decade time, the police was on the ascendancy. This demoralized the dacoit gangs completely and they were forced to seek an honorable surrender. In 1972, therefore with the efforts of the peace mission headed by Shri Jayprakash Narayan, nearly 550 dacoits surrendered, peace and prosperity returned to the area after centuries.
The dacoit problem, however, cropped up again in the eighties with the formation of the gangs of Malkhan Singh, Mohar Singh and Ramesh Sikarwar. The State Government had to enact a Special Law in 1981, the Madhya Pradesh Dakaity Prabhavit Kshektra Adhiniyam, with special powers to police. Armed with these special powers the police again moved into action and eliminated most of the notorious gangs in encounters. Later, Malkhan Singh, Ramesh Sikhawar and Phoolan Devi surrendered before the Chief Minister, Shri Arjun Singh and again peace was restored. The special law was repealed thereafter.
The dacoit problem has not been completely eradicated and a lasting solution lies largely in terms of socio-economic remedy. Today, the problem does exist, but within manageable limits.
In the eighties, the State Police had hardly contained the dacoit menace, when in the southern-most Bastar area, a part of M.P. at the time, the presence of naxalites of Peoples War Group started being noticed.
The Naxalites infiltrated from across the adjoining areas of Andhra Pradesh. Initially, they used the forests of Bastar as a sanctuary for shelter, but gradually, after surveying the entire area, they started delivering "instant-justice" to tribals against their exploitation by some unscrupulous forest officials.
By the year 1990, they organized themselves for committing violent incidents and spread their tentacles into the forest covered regions right up to the middle of the state in Mandla district. Their activities assumed threatening postures affecting 3 ranges of the state, with as many as 18 'Dalams' operating in M.P. Armed with sophisticated weapons, like AK-47 rifles and trained in remote control explosive devices, they ambushed police patrolling parties which has taken a toll of 98 policemen so far. There have also been sporadic instances of attack on isolated stations and loot of their armory.
The state government allocated substantial funds to meet this challenge under the anti-naxalite plan, which helped the state police improve their resources in the past 5 years. It was therefore, possible for taking counter measures which have accounted for 40 Naxalites being killed in 10 encounters and more than 50 Naxalites carrying rewards on their heads being arrested. The naxalite activities nevertheless, continue to be a major problem for the state police and a matter of concern for the state government however it has reduced in area as most of the naxalite affected area has gone to Chhattisgarh on division of state