TODAY -

Public protests and police in Manipur

Ravi Longjam *

ILP :  Students clash with Police at Kwakeithel Keithel  :: September 14 2016
ILP : Students clash with Police at Kwakeithel on Sep 14 2016 :: Pix - Priyojit K



Police and security forces are the most ubiquitous and visible agents of the State in our country. The same is true of Manipur where we see greenery (SFs) and khaki (Police) everywhere. At the same time, the role and responsibilities of the security forces are quite challenging in this multi-ethnic, conflict-ridden and limited resource state.

Despite the 24 x 7 service rendered by the security forces, conflicts and disorder of a large scale occurred in one corner of the state or the other. To put in a different way, though Police and security forces are everywhere, people have low faith and confidence in the law enforcement agencies of the state and often resort to mob justice, bandhs and strikes for any sort of deprivations, dissatisfactions and tensions.

No doubt, India has a tradition to express grievances through organized demonstrations and peaceful protests. But, this right to peaceful protest, enshrined in the Constitution of India as a fundamental right, is often expressed and practiced by the people of Manipur. In other words, in Manipur, this space for legitimate dissent is mostly occupied by the persistent mass protest and forceful demonstrations against the government authorities and its agencies. In this scenario, the role and responsibilities of the law enforcement agencies, particularly Manipur Police, are highly crucial.

POLICE IMAGE

It is very unfortunate that the presence of police force and security forces has no longer created a sense of confidence among the public. This lack of trust and confidence creates difficulties while ensuring public order and normalcy. In fact, the police are expected to be the most accessible and interactive organisation of any society.

Similarly, it is agreed that in the time of crisis and difficulty, when we do not know, what to do and whom to approach, a policeman and a police station happen to be the most appropriate and approachable place and person for us. However, instead of approaching police, different sections of Manipur society prefer rallies, agitations and strikes.

Furthermore, the high expectation of the public, while approaching any personnel wearing police uniform, is often defeated in the complexities of police jurisdictions and heavy dependence on rigid rules, regulations and orders. In this regard, police personnel socialization and their aptitude should be to provide police service to public as a client. Hence, citizen centric policing emphasizing on how to connect with people will change public perception about policing.

PUBLIC PROTEST

It is a fact that peaceful protest is an integral part of a democratic society. However, bandhs and general strikes are the most visible form of public protest in Manipur. This trend of calling bandhs for redressing grievances has seriously affected the socio-economic activities of the people at large.

Taking decision in favour of bandhs against the larger socio-economic interest of the society reflect a poor sense of reasoning and lack of social responsibility on the part of the local leaders or Joint Action Committee (JAC) leadership. These leaders, overwhelmed by emotions, often considered bandh as a tool as well as solutions for any issues and dissatisfaction.

Likewise, the main concerns during agitations and demonstrations, often changes into how protesters are being treated rather than outcome of the issues and grievances raised. In fact, various issues and grievances of the people could be resolved and addressed through the law enforcement agencies, criminal justice and judicial process.

However, people as well as their JAC leaders are finding bandhs and strikes as their favorite instrument to highlight the grievances and injustice in Manipur. In other words, Manipur people prefer going to streets for justice as a better option than going to law enforcement agencies. This, explicitly, suggest the deficits of public confidence towards police capabilities.

PUBLIC POLICE RELATIONS

Often, peaceful public protests in Manipur turn into violent protests due lack of mutual trust and understanding between the public and the police. Obviously, the reason behind this is the offensive image of the police. It would be useful to analyse how a mass protest turns into violent protest in Manipur. Let us examine the recent student rally marching towards the Chief Ministerís bungalow.

To control the situation, police officers persuaded and advised the studentsí gathering and their leaders for arriving at an understanding. However, some agitating students, embolden by increasing studentsí protestors on the streets, overpowered police personnel and tried to force their way through barricades.

Under these circumstances, police resorted to minimum use of force to disperse the agitating students. As usual, being not satisfied with how they are being treated, the student protestors retaliated with stones and a tense confrontation broke out. Likewise, police personnel reacted angrily without control and order against the agitating students.

In this scuffle, scores of students sustained injuries and police finally dispersed the agitating students. Initially, the police reaction seems correct but this offensive reaction defeated their basic purpose and duty of maintaining and ensuring peaceful rally. In this way, the public-police relations deteriorated in Manipur.

CONCLUSION

The alleged rude, militaristic and corrupt image of Manipur police is the biggest hurdle to public-police relations. Actually, the training of lower ranks of police personnel is mostly focused on hard skills like combat skills, weapon handling skills and basic drills etc. Thus, adequate orientation of police personnel towards human relation approach and soft skills like ethics, democratic policing, negotiation and conflict management skills are quite essential for achieving effective public-police relations.

To this end, a sincere effort is needed to update and professionalized police force that ensure popular expectations of a democratic state. In this regard, the Prime Ministerís SMART Policing Model will adequately equip and modernise the police forces.

In short, SMART means S for strict but sensitive, M for modern and mobile, A for alert and accountable, R for reliable and responsive and T for techno- savvy and trained. This SMART policing is modeled to enhance police capacities to deliver in a democratic state and professionally committed to the ideals of a welfare State. Similarly, a more responsive Manipur police and their sensitive approach towards public frustration will reduce mob justice and persistent mass protest in Manipur.

(These views are personal and not related to any organization )


* Ravi Longjam wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The writer can be contacted at longjamba(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on September 24, 2016.



* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Tribes, Art & Soul of India #1: Gallery
  • Rally against Mob Lynching #1: Gallery
  • 'Sahnit' an honour or a disgrace
  • Irabot : Socio-Political Challenges
  • Training employees for better governance
  • Blue Ocean :: Poem
  • Sextortion: Making money from shame
  • Condemn murder of Neiphretuo Metsie
  • Social lacunae
  • BJP on poll drive at Imphal, Kohima
  • Mary Kom lost 2 kg in 4 hours
  • Historical Evaluation of Puya Meithaba #2
  • Felicitation of Sportsperson: Gallery
  • ICJ: Investigation of Extrajudicial Killing
  • Legal profession as career option #2
  • Loktak Down Stream HE Project (2x33MW)
  • Protest against mob lynching at DU
  • Ripples of Music :: Poem
  • Memo submitted to CM over lynching
  • Poems of Peace, Resistance ...
  • Helicopter Schedule for Imphal-Jiri
  • Mirabai recommended for Khel Ratna
  • Martyrdom of Haipou Jadonang #3: Gallery
  • Manipur State is still winning..
  • Gazetteer of North-East India :: Book
  • Sunfeast Cup Football Tournament
  • Trip down memory lane
  • Naga Peace Process :: News Timeline
  • Folk Song :: Poem
  • The Endureres at Dwarka Half Marathon
  • Main accused in cop slaying nabbed
  • Naga talks not confined to Nagaland..
  • Trekking to Dzukou Valley #1 : Gallery
  • Rest in Peace Humanity
  • Ph Banti's artwork 'Trafficking of children'
  • Cry of a Dying River - 45 :: Poem
  • Buddhism is not a religion
  • Jobs at R-Square Design
  • The Killing Fields 2013-18 : News Timeline
  • Candle Light at DU over lynching
  • Society as a reflection of govt
  • Mobocracy : Shame on Manipur
  • Kuki Black Day @CCpur : Gallery
  • miAoIbgi pNTuH :: Seireng
  • Apikcha, Apaiba, Tinilung :: eMing
  • An opinion on Tharoijam killing
  • How Manipur lost internal autonomy, Kabaw
  • Admission for PhD at Tripura Univ
  • Meefam ST at Nambol, Khangabok
  • Importance of Forest & Environment
  • Deep social divide: Two different folks?
  • Kuki Black Day: Kukis Will never forget
  • R & V Art House's First Art Fest 2018
  • Celebrating International Literacy Day, 2018
  • Born a Kuki, die a Kuki :: Poem
  • History of North East India :: Book
  • Will SimpliciTB make TB treatment simpler
  • Meefam chathaduna ST gi issue..
  • Dipankar Talukdar- Mr Model of World Star
  • System error- who will fix Broken Window
  • Reshuffle Talks : Say No to Yes Me
  • India negotiating vehicle pact with Myanmar
  • Chalwa Village, Kangpokpi #2 : Gallery
  • Thien & its downfall in Zeliangrong #2
  • Is FA a self exposed daylight robbery?
  • Nation Needs Small Farmers
  • Who is programming you ?
  • Bandhs as dissent & survival of laziest
  • Looking for Raju :: Poem
  • The cry of the 2nd class citizen
  • Bharat Bandh in Imphal
  • Historical Evaluation of Puya Meithaba #1
  • Sit-In: Naga Peace Talk #2 : Gallery
  • Naga-Kuki conflict: Search for definitions
  • Mega Marathon Manipur : Download Form
  • Legal profession as career option
  • Guv felicitates 5 JAK RIF for flood relief
  • Stored Anger :: Book Review
  • On stepping into the 20th year of TSE
  • Sept - month which reinstated our courage
  • Krishna Janma @ISKCON #2 : Gallery
  • Empty :: Poem
  • Lets beat littering - plastics pollution
  • NEHU Seminar : Urbanization in India
  • Jobs at JCRE Skill Solutions
  • Declaration of Naga Collective Spirit [Sep 8]
  • Akanba Khongjangidamak Yathokpa Loire
  • Support for STDC from UMA, Assam
  • 'Deplorable power supply in Nagaland'
  • Tryst with destiny - Should we accept ?
  • Stand off at MU : Impact on LS Poll
  • Exploring the enthralling Tuilha Kol
  • Kamesh Salam : Outstanding Green Activist
  • The Valley Of Brahmaputra :: Book
  • Development of road database
  • The inner page story :: Poem
  • Kakching WW-II Memorial Run 2018
  • STDC public meeting at Langathel Keithel
  • Maibi Jagoi at Sangai Fest : Gallery
  • My poll without prejudice to anyone
  • MEETAC - Mission for streamlining TK
  • Conditions leading to Marxism
  • Heart Camp at Khelakhong, Thoubal
  • Cyber bully: Crime that follows you home
  • Bhupen Hazarika : Tribute at London
  • AEP & Importance of Myanmar & NE
  • Political pandemonium
  • Students central to MU issue
  • Landscape from Koubru #2 : Gallery
  • Leishangthem Robert for Mr. World 2018
  • Oinam Shilla Chanu at Mrs India Earth
  • North-east Frontier Of India :: Book
  • Thien & its downfall in Zeliangrong #1
  • Cry of a Dying River - 44 :: Poem
  • JRF Post at Mizoram University
  • Honours to Bamboo; a ubiquitous gift
  • Case of hunter now being huntedr
  • Chaklam Khongchat Numit #3 : Gallery
  • Women Empowerment & judicial Activism
  • Narin Chenggum - wild edible mushroom
  • Flying Star at your lips :: Poem
  • Out of the box thinking
  • Call centre fraud: Vicious vishing attack
  • Changing India & its impact on Manipur
  • MU stand off gets uglier
  • Tikendrajit : The Lion of Manipur #4
  • Krishna Janma @Mahabali #1 : Gallery
  • Eastern Frontier of India :: Book Review
  • Remembering Radhakrishnan ..
  • Moments to cherish :: Poem
  • Glimpse of the Buddha's teaching
  • NH7 Weekender Express Editions
  • Rejoinder to NDPP from NPF [05 Sep]
  • Mental equation
  • Are teachers teaching ? Apt, timely poser
  • Sirarakhong Hathei Phanit @Ukhrul : Gallery
  • Sit-In: Naga Peace Talk #1 : Gallery
  • Globalization, Act East Policy & Manipur
  • Review on anthology of Parthajit Borah
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand :: Timeline
  • Child Friendly Police Stations proposed
  • ADBU Goes Green with Solar Energy
  • Convocation of Assam Don Bosco
  • Fetal Echocardiography - Seminar held
  • Rejoinder to NPF from NDPP [04 Sep]
  • Divide, divert and rule will not work
  • FA, MU crisis : Issues before LS polls
  • Krishna Janma @ISKCON #1 : Gallery
  • Komrem Student Day @Bangalore : Gallery
  • September Calendar for Year 2018 :: Tools
  • The Coils of Pakhangba :: Book
  • Physics Program in Don Bosco, Tura
  • Condemns MU VC's vindictive stance
  • 'Policy of India to suppress people'
  • NDPP congratulates Abu Metha
  • Pandey back at MU! Violating spirit of MoA
  • Exhibition @ Art College #2: Gallery
  • AMWJU Sit-In-Protest : Gallery
  • Shri Krishna Janmasthami :: Book
  • Life's heck :: Poem
  • Environment & lung health are vital
  • Innovation for the common man
  • Humanitarian crisis with NRC in Assam
  • Rejoinder to NDPP from NPF [02 Sep]
  • Jangou Rah : eRang Classic
  • The Story of 40 Pineapple Suckers
  • Rebirth of Manipur Human Rights Comm
  • Yumkhaibam Nanao Eramdam Yaourakhre
  • Lecture: Governance & Public Services
  • X-rated poem :: Poem
  • Ningol Chakkouba Celebration in Delhi
  • Baton changes hands at IGAR (South)
  • Rejoinder to NPF from NDPP [01 Sept]
  • A Wake-up call
  • Lok Sabha polls : More crucial for BJP
  • Martyrdom of Haipou Jadonang #2: Gallery
  • Chaklam Khongchat Numit #2 : Gallery
  • The World of Kuki People :: Book
  • Effects of the Burning of Meitei Puyas
  • Soil Technician required at MaolKeki
  • Jr. Mr. India 2018, Gyanendra Thokchom
  • Rejoinder to HTC & allies' statement
  • Consensual sex..Does it amount to rape ?
  • Need for all to keep their sanity
  • Sanagi Tenawa :: Funga Wari
  • MU: Den of Insurgents or Den of Ideas?
  • Can NRC Update save Assam and NE ?
  • Victim of Enforced Disappearances
  • Admission for Ph.D. at Tripura University
  • Martyrdom of Haipou Jadonang #1: Gallery
  • Physics Program in Don Bosco College
  • Resolution: Right of Human Right Defender
  • Advancing rights of Human Right Defender
  • Dolaithabi Dam , Senapati : Gallery
  • Eid-Ul-Adhaa Festival #2 : Gallery
  • Chaklam Khongchat Numit #1 : Gallery
  • 47th Nagas Annual Meet at Mumbai
  • Transcending Patriots' Day(s) #4
  • Sangai Fest: Fashion Show #2 : Gallery
  • Tikendrajit : The Lion of Manipur #3
  • Dr. Jodhachandra Sanasam : Sahitya
  • Architects announces 1st MADE 2018
  • Expedite FA Rally #2 : Gallery
  • Billie's Book by Ranjeeta Mayanglambam
  • Shougrakpam Bijaya :: A Profile
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Disputed Myanmar Border Pillar : Gallery
  • Front Page Photo 2018 #3: Gallery
  • Dzuko valley #4 :: 360 Panorama View
  • Manglandasu Nang - OST :: e-pao Radio
  • Temples of Manipur : Gallery
  • Old Manipuri Movie #1 :: eRang Classic
  • SPONSORED ADS