The Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) Police is set to procure “body cameras” for its personnel as part of its “smart policing” initiative, with the twin purpose of strengthening security and increasing transparency, The Indian Express reported.
“The J&K Police force is about 90,000 strong, so the body cameras can’t be available for everyone. They will first be provided for law and order personnel and the traffic police,” The Indian Express quoted DGP S P Vaid as saying.
The report quoted IGP (Kashmir) S P Pani said the cameras would be mounted on the uniforms as a “visible interface between citizens and law enforcement”. Saying this was a major step forward, he said: “This is a civic measure aimed at increasing accountability within the force. We are training our boys for using this.”
The CRPF, which has been using body cameras in the state for over a year, considers it an “effective measure”. “What this does is that it keeps recording and transmitting to the ops room. So, during operations, it helps guide the forces on the ground and also helps in the analysis, after the operation or the law and order situation is over,” The Indian Express quoted IG CRPF, Zulfiqar Hassan.
In a related development, police stations in the state are being connected via the Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS). According to senior officers, 78 of the 86 police stations in Kashmir zone are already part of the new system. The CCTNS is a Central project aimed at creating an integrated system for effective policing through e-Governance, and is implemented by the National Crime Records Bureau, a report said.
The number of CCTVs in the Valley is also being increased. Senior officers said these measures are being implemented to increase transparency in policing, The Indian Express reported.