Mumbai: On Sunday, July 5th at Dharavi, we organised the Police -Citizen interactive programme in association with the All India Thowheed Jamaath for their women’s wing. There were more than 200 women present for this meeting. We had requested the Mumbai Police Commissioner to depute a Senior Woman Police Officer. The Police Commissioner of Mumbai, Rakesh Maria deputed Sujata Patil, Sr. Inspector of Police- Kherwadi Police Station for this meeting.
Sr. Police Inspector, Sujata Patil in her opening remarks said, the Mumbai Police is here to serve you and we definitely pay more attention to the issues and problems of the children and women in particular. In her lucid style she also advised them and guided them that in case of difficulties, you need not go to the Police Station but dial 100 so that the police could help those women who are in problems. One of the good ideas she shared is to always keep the telephone number of your local police station and the Beat Chowky so that prompt and quick action could be taken.
“Dont be afraid to share your problems” and the “Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria has given us instructions to attend to children and women’s problems promptly”. Mumbai Police are your friends, she remarked. If there are concerns of any illegal things happening in your areas do bring it to our notice for prompt help. Please support us in our work so that the area is crime free.
This was followed by an interactive session where some of the women raised various concerns and issues. One of the question raised was “Do you have to pay money when you visit the police station to file a complain? That’s the reason why many of us do not go to a police station when we have a problem “. In reply, Sr. Inspector of Police Sujata Patil said the Government pays us our salary and you do not have to pay anything while filing your complaints. If such a thing happens please go to the Senior Police Officers in the police station and inform them.
When we dial the police helpline “100” number, they ask us to identify ourselves, was another question raised by one of the participants. Patil explained that when you call the number 100, your number gets logged into the system and than it is accordingly passed on to the respective police station where the problem has happened. But she said there is nothing to get worried. Sujata Patil encouraged the participants to raise their various questions and were answered by her.
Overall this meeting was an excellent method to build confidence in the citizens about the police and explain to them about their rights. The talk would also help them to approach the police in the event of any problems. Mouddin , Trustee of All India Thowheed Jamath spoke about Islam being a religion of peace. Also he said we are safe because the Mumbai Police work hard to protect all citizens. We must seek their help when we have problems . He thanked the Mumbai Police for all its good work.
In his concluding remarks, Dolphy Dsouza urged the women not to be afraid but approach their respective police stations in case of difficulties and problems. Police are meant to attend and solve our problems. We also have to work in collaboration with the Mumbai Police in ensuring that we have ” Better Policing” for all of us.
Dolphy also handed over the the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative [CHRI] Police Handbook: “101 Things You Wanted To Know About The Police But Were Too Afraid To Ask” to Sr. Inspector of Police, Sujata Patil. Also the participants got a copy each of the Handbook. He said if there are specific problems that they must contact the Trustees of their Organisation for help and redressal with the concerned Police Station.
Among the other notable Police Officials were Smt, Gosavi, and Police Constables Banu Tadavi and Jayshri Dhoble from the local Dharavi Police Station.
Sreenivas one of our team members helped arrange this programme. The other team members who attended were, Bhavesh Pandya, Salil Rameshchandra and Stanley Dsouza. We intend to organise many such Police-Citizen partnership meetings in different parts of Mumbai. We thank the Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria for deputing Sr. Inspector of Police – Sujata Patil for this programme.