All 71 personnel of KS Layout police station transferred

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All 71 personnel of KS Layout police station transferred

Bengaluru: In what could well be a first in the history of the Bengaluru City Police, all 71 personnel posted at the Kumaraswamy Layout Police Station — which has found itself in several controversies in the last one year — were shunted out on Friday. They have been replaced by a new set of personnel.

The latest incident in the problematic station, which hastened the decision, was when an Assistant Sub Inspector Renukaiah assaulted a woman at the police station on January 20. A video clip of the assault was leaked to the media by his colleagues as part of a bitter internal rift among factions of rival personnel posted to the station. The ASI was subsequently suspended.

This is not the first time though that the Kumaraswamy Layout Police Station has found itself in the eye of a media storm. In June 2018, a woman constable lost a rifle allotted to her for bandobast, but a probe revealed the rifle had been stolen by her colleagues who wanted to get back at her.

Factionalism at the cost of efficiency
A senior police official said that the personnel at the station were divided into North Karnataka and South Karnataka factions and had their own WhatsApp groups. “They were not even on talking terms. The rifle-theft incident and Renukaiah’s video being leaked were manifestations of the problem. The groups were trying to sabotage each other instead of discussing crimes in their beats,” he said.

Quarrels over weekly offs, leaves and distribution of work were allegedly common.

“A departmental inquiry revealed that these internal groups within the station were compromising policing and the inspector had lost control of the personnel,” the senior official added.

Attempt to change the culture
“The transfers were put into effect to change the culture of the police station. Policing cannot take a hit because of internal issues. The police is a disciplinary force, and it must remain so.

“Transfers need not be perceived as a punishment, as the culture of the police station was a collective responsibility and cannot be put down to individuals,” said K. Annamalai, DCP (South), who recommended the mass transfers.

All 71 personnel have been posted within the city itself and new personnel posted to the station are also from within the city commissionerate.

According to police officials, three sub-inspectors who were also transferred out, are yet to be relieved to ensure a smooth transition for the new team.

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