Hoysalas will ferry urgent medical cases to and from hospitalMarch 30, 2020, 4:56 p.m. | Updated March 30, 2020, 5:23 p.m.
Bangalore’s Commissioner of Police, Bhaskar Rao -- like anyone in charge during a time of crisis -- believes he must speak to his troops often and do so with clarity. As any management guru will testify, clear communication is a key characteristic of leadership.
This is even more true in the case of a pandemic with an unknown virus, where no one, not even the authorities know which way is up. The fluid situation calls for flexible attitudes and thinking on one’s feet.
By this introduction, we mean to say that the Bangalore Police Commissioner finds himself in a situation where he has the opposing compulsions of strictly implementing the curfew and yet, allowing people to go about their basic needs.
Speaking to Explocity, Commissioner Rao said, “I am proud of my boys, that’s the entire police force, and that this was my instruction to everyone in the force. It is an instruction to all constables to prepare themselves better to handle this extraordinary situation which they too are facing for the first time.”
He shared with us, a copy of his broadcast over police communication channels, his 15-point directive to the police control rooms - these being the nodal points of dissemination of instruction to the police force.
Brief transcription below, freely translated:
The police personnel have done a remarkable job till now, they should continue to do so.
People delivering milk, vegetables and newspapers should not be disrupted. People manning ATMs even without a pass should be allowed to do so and people should be allowed to withdraw.
All grocery, fruits, vegetable and provision stores should practice strict social distancing. They should have permanent painted markers for people to stand and not just with chalk pieces or rangoli.
Every police station should have a PRO and a responsible PSI or head constable should aid any people who approach, they should be treated well and if the issue is not handled or resolved then it should be directed to the ACP or DCP. They should not be sent away without remedy. Provision should be made for them to sit comfortably. They should not be yelled at or humiliated in any way.
Some roads in all police station limits should be barricaded and movement of vehicles should be checked. Unnecessary movement should be disallowed.
Around 2008 vehicles have been seized by Traffic and Law & Order which have to be released after a warning but henceforth all four-wheelers and two-wheelers will be seized and returned only after the lock down is over according to NDMA (National Disaster Management Authority) Act, a case will be registered against them.
Lots of passes have been issued and the DCP, ACP and Inspectors should give passes only for deserving people, like people who deliver food, essential provisions according to the guidelines given. People who distribute fruits and vegetables from the villages should be given prominence. Passes should not be given to please people privately. Passes should not be misused. Passes should be checked in the police station limits with checkpoints and barricades.
Law & Order and Traffic police should coordinate well with each other.
“No lathi bandobast” has been exceptionally effective and it will be reviewed again. All seizure of vehicles should be videographed.
All Paying Guest accommodations should treat the boys and girls well, they should not be harassed and food should be provided for them in that premise itself. Rent should not be increased and they should not be asked to pay more money. Closure of Paying Guest accommodation should not be used as a threat. No gouging. No landlord should trouble any tenant in case rent is not paid this month.
Henceforth the police, who were working long 12-hour shifts with two shifts a day, should work in three shifts. All DCPs and ACPs and inspectors should organise such that police get a little stress-free work environment as the situation has become toned down. They should all be provided with sanitizers, mask, food, water and toilet facilities.
People facing emergencies -- like those needed dialysis, chemotherapy or those who have suffered a heart attack and so on should be helped out immediately. A Hoysala should meet them, pick them up, take them to the hospital. If necessary, another Hoysala will be deployed to pick up the patients and take them home.
People who go for morning walks should be disallowed from doing so and they should stay within their apartments and homes, they cannot wear their shorts and walking shoes or go out alone or in groups. They should be addressed politely over a mic set and made to understand that the police are working for the public 24 hours.
Migrant laborers from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Orissa and West Bengal and North East should be treated well and their issues should be taken care of and if it cannot be solved the ACP or DCP should be informed, similarly if people from Uttar Karnataka come the police should ensure that they are taken care of or it should be brought to the notice of the DCP.
There will be famous people who show up in the name of helping and doing good work. Do not let them use this as a publicity stunt or photo-op for Facebook. They should be addressed with respect and asked to leave.
All police stations, CAR (Central Armed Reserve), police quarters should be fumigated and for no reason should the police or anyone else be affected.
The police force has really worked well with patience and they have to continue and they have to ensure that their health of their own and their families are taken care of. Officers should be informed that all families should be given masks and sanitizers and if donors are giving, they should also give them to their families in the police quarters.