Citizens Charter for Police Reform

The need for police reforms in India is long recognised. There has been almost three decades of discussion by government created committees and commissions. Way back in 1979 the National Police Commission (NPC) was set up to report on policing and give recommendations for reform. Between this period the Commission produced eight reports and also a Model Police Act. None of the recommendations as laid down in the NPC reports were adopted. This persuaded two former DGPs in 1996 to file a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court asking the Court to direct governments to implement the recommendations of the NPC. The Court in 1998 set up the Ribeiro Committee which handed in its reports in 1999. This was followed by the Padmanabhaiah Committee report in 2000 and eventually the Police Act Drafting Committee (PADC) more commonly referred to as the Soli Sorabjee Committee that drafted a new police act to replace the colonial 1861 Act. However very little was done to implement the recommendations put forth by any of these committees or commissions. It was only a decade later in 2006 that the Court delivered its verdict in the PIL filed in 1996. In what is popularly referred to as the Prakash Singh case the Supreme Court ordered that reform must take place. The states and union territories were directed to comply with seven binding directives that would kick start reform. These directives were taken from the various committee and commission reports that were generated since 1979. The implementation of the Courtâ

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