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Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Monday said that the police should create an atmosphere of security in the state in next 2-3 years where ideally nobody needs a personal security officer (PSO).

Inaugurating the Second Conference of Superintendents of Police (SP) of all districts held at Oil India Headquarters at Duliajan in Dibrugarh district, Himanta Biswa Sarma said if the law and order situation is alright, then why is there a need to assign PSOs to certain people. Giving PSO to an individual means it’s a failure of the police, he said.

“We have to change it. We should create an atmosphere of security in our state where ideally nobody needs the PSO. The Assam Police have to come out of the notion if a Superintendent of Police (SP) gives PSO to an individual, in my view that is admission of failure. Recently, I discussed with some SPs and asked them why you gave PSOs and they told me that, there were some incidents and still there are threats. Why have not mitigated the threat. The incident was happened seven years ago and you have failed to nab the culprit. You have failed to neutralise the situation. Giving PSO to an individual means it’s a failure of the police,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said.

“I am gheraoed by police when I visit a place. But I need a Superintendent of Police (SP) who will say sir you just go like this in my district, there is absolutely no issue, you can roam around without security. By deploying a 12-15 security personnel in front of me if you try to protect the life of the Chief Minister, that is admission of the fact that there is a threat in your district,” he further said.

“The entire world has changed. Now the VIPs don’t like security that way. I will feel privileged if I can visit a place of a district without security and interact or walk along with people. But if I am surrounded by commandos, it is a gentle reminder to us that law and order situation in my district is not good. I want to reach a situation in next 2-3 years that ideally nobody wants PSO in Assam. Make ensure that, no criminal, insurgent can enter your district who can pose threat to the VIP or anybody, don’t give PSO, try to neutralize the threat, that should be the new order of Assam Police,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said.

Himanta Biswa Sarma also said that in last eight months, the Assam Police has done maximum and the entire force dedicated itself in protecting the sovereignty of the country in last two decades.

“A lot of policemen had laid down their lives in case of insurgent movement which is patronized from outside the country or from inside. The tribal insurgency in Assam is now over. In last eight months we have seen all tribal groups came forward for negotiations, they deposited their arms and simultaneously we have started their rehabilitation programme for them also. All these things happened with solid support from the civil society. We have a few more obstacles and hurdles to cross but now time has come for Assam Police to prepare for a new order where we have to tackle militancy but we have to also respond to organized crimes and also we have to stand along with the people. We need active policing through intelligence, surveillance. Give general protection to people,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said.

He also said that their approach should be zero tolerance against criminals and economic offenders.

“We can’t be friends with people trying to destabilize our economy and those trying to destroy our youth. I am happy the police are trying to adjust to their new role. I said trying to deliberately because my expectations are high. We lag behind in quality investigation. If we are focusing on the maintenance of law and order, that is one pillar and another pillar is to demolish and destroy organized crimes, syndicates,” the Assam chief minister said.

He further said that successful prosecution is the key to a successful police force.

“In this era of technology, we can’t survive with old methods. Tech-driven police force is very important to prevent crime. Modernization does not mean new weapons and new vehicles. It means technology. The Assam Police have to learn how technology can be optimally used,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said.

The Assam CM directed DGP Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta to complete the recruitment process of the Assam Police by May 10.

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