[Answered] “Indian investigation agencies need modernisation and more autonomy to increase their efficacy.” Comment.

Demand of the question
Introduction. Contextual Introduction.
Body. Issues faced by investigation agencies in India. Solution to resolve these issues.
Conclusion. Way forward.

Investigation agencies are facing many challenges in the investigation of traditional and modern crimes. The investigating agencies need to evolve ways to improve quality of investigation especially for economic and organized crimes and related legal issues.

Need of modernisation of investigation agencies:

  1. In a large and populous country like India, investigation agencies need to be well-equipped, in terms of personnel, weaponry, forensic, communication and transport support, to perform their role well.
  2. They need to have the operational freedom to carry out their responsibilities professionally, and satisfactory working conditions while being held accountable for poor performance or misuse of power.
  3. In 2015, the conviction rate for crimes recorded under the Indian Penal Code was 47%. One of the reasons behind this is the poor quality of investigations.
  4. The social and technological changes fuelled by the internet and the fast changing social media nature, intensity and the reach of crime may lead to unprecedented lawlessness and frightening dimensions of global terrorism. This require modern investigation efforts.
  5. Traditional and outdated devices used in the past for investigation are not be sufficient. Modern devices like artificial intelligence, robots, drones, CCTVs are required to fight increasing crime rates.
  6. There are new technology related challenges which are faced by the law enforcement agencies. Increasing cyber crime, fake propagandas demand modern methods of investigation.
  7. To succeed in identifying and tracing global communications, investigators have to work across border, not only with one‘s counterpart but also with industry to preserve critical evidence such as log files, emails etc. before it is altered or deleted.
  8. With increased threat to privacy of citizens, investigation agencies need modern methods to prevent misuse of data.
  9. Political authorities still have a stronghold over the police and frequent changes of Police heads once a new government is elected has become a practice in many states. This lead to inefficiencies in police system leading to corruption and abuse.
  10. Investigation agencies need prior permission of government in many cases especially against bureaucrats.
  11. Investigation in the cases where the high profile people, VIP’s as well political parties are involved do not succeed. There is direct or indirect interference of political parties in the police investigation.

What should be done?

  1. A complaint authority should be constituted at the state and district levels to inquire into allegations of serious misconduct and abuse of power.
  2. Separate the investigating police from the law and order police to ensure speedier investigation, better expertise and improved rapport with the people.
  3. The Political class should take bold initiatives to bring in more reforms in the existing investigation system in India. The need is to have an impartial and professional organisation because the criminal justice system cannot function without a healthy investigative agency.
  4. The reforms in the Indian Police are required through appropriate interventions in skill building and attitudinal training.

Thus with changing times way and methods of investigation should improve through modernisation and autonomy to investigation agencies. A more political will and nudge is required to achieve it.

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