Bihar Police Given Smartphones; Will Use WhatsApp, Facebook & Twitter for Communication
A state that has been stereotyped as one of the most corrupt in India, is taking a leap towards digitization of communication. Bihar Police is not only moving towards smartphones, but will also be using them for efficient and quick communication.
The Government has taken a bold decision to shift everyone from feature phones to smartphones, irrespective of the grade. Bihar Police will be getting the smartphones to use WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook and EMails for communications between the officers themselves.
Pankaj Darad, Inspector-General (Provisions) said, “All the police officials – right from Station House Officers (SHOs) to DGP – will be given Android smartphones for better and efficient state-level coordination. The use of smartphones will instantly connect all the officers right from police station level to state-level.”
Details of the announcement
The Government and the Police feel that the Android smartphones will allow the officers to send information and documents quickly, which could not be done earlier. This is completely true and in fact also supported by everyone using smartphone these days.
The total cost of this project is expected to be Rs 2.08 Crore. 1,390 smartphones have been purchased, with an average price of Rs 15,000. The Home Department has cleared the proposal to purchase smartphones for police officials in Bihar.
Out of these, 940 handsets will be given to the SHOs and the rest will be distributed amongst the senior officials. This is far ahead of the current communication methods which include feature phones and wireless walkie-talkies.
The officers will be mandated to download the social networking features like WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook and EMail clients so as to initiate communication between themselves and senior officials.
These applications are clearly the future of communication and have laid a foundation on the internet. Large organisations and famous personalities are using it to reach out to their target audience. If they can, then so can the police, who work day and night to ensure our safety.
Pros of using these tools for communication
The biggest advantage of using these services is that officers will be able to communicate directly with their supervisors and other officers, without the need to wait for an hour or more.
In case any photos or criminals, crime scene, documents and proofs have to be sent, it can be done instantly through these services. The Police officers in a particular area can make WhatsApp Groups or Facebook Groups and communicate with one another about the latest happenings in that region.
Written communication, even online, is always a better form of proof than verbal communication, which will reduce the time spent in gathering evidence.
Another important feature will be that the common man will be able to share his grievance with the police directly through WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter. Twitter is being used by Police officials at a very high level, but more penetration on the granular level will allow faster addressal to all issues.
This is a welcome move from Bihar and we hope other states follow this soon. We do see Twitter being used by most ministries in India, but this is the first time Police officials at every level will be using social media tools. If you’re in Bihar and facing trouble, you know who to contact now!