Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Terrorists, Naxalites, and a lot more on HM's plate

Nikhil S Dixit / DNAMonday, November 9, 2009 2:05 IST Email

Mumbai: The importance of the post of the home minister of Maharashtra is easy to gauge. The Congress and the NCP were deadlocked in a fight for the post for more than two weeks. But being the home minister is like wearing a crown of thorns. The spectre of terrorism looms larger than ever before following the 26/11 terror attacks

Former director general of police PS Pasricha said that the biggest challenge before the home minister would be to tackle terrorism from across the border. "Another aspect which needs urgent attention is the growing Naxalite menace within the country," he added.

Former Mumbai police commissioner MN Singh said that the top-most priority for the home minister should be to set his house in order. "The most important thing is to improve the police force. The need of the hour is to eradicate politicisation of the department and strengthening it," he said. "The home minister should stick to supervising work at the macro level. The micro issues should be left to the police commissioner, who needs complete operational freedom."

Another former Mumbai police chief, Julio Rebeiro, said that the minister's priority should be to enhance the image of the police department. "The attitude needs to change, particularly at the lower level. After that, other things will fall into place," Rebeiro said.

If the cops are motivated, the department will be able to deal with terrorism and information gathering in a better way. Also, it will be easier to win the confidence of the people, he added.

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