Addressing the annual director generals of police conference here, the prime minister reminded the senior police officials of rising expectations from them on the part of the general public, saying they were responsible for preventing crimes against women and must also ensure sensitive treatment of victims during investigation and trial.

He said some states have witnessed a substantial increase in the number of communal incidents and a major communal clash in Muzaffarnagar in Uttar Pradesh last September took a large toll of lives, leaving thousands of innocent people displaced from their homes.

 

"This is most worrisome. We simply cannot allow such a state of affairs to continue. Our law and order agencies must ensure that trivial or local issues are not exploited by vested interests to incite communal passions. And once disturbances occur, they must be tackled with the utmost firmness and speed, without prejudice, fear or favour," the Prime Minister said.

He said state governments have the responsibility to ensure firm handling of communal situations.

"State DGPs present here have the responsibility to ensure that their police forces act in the required manner in preventing communal tensions and dealing with them once they do take place. I expect all state DGPs to discharge this responsibility fully," he said.

He said that the tragic rape and murder of a young girl in Delhi last December had brought into sharp focus the issue of women's safety and the rising expectations of the people from the police in preventing such crimes.

"We have recently enacted several laws providing stringent punishment for such crimes and more sensitive treatment of victims during investigation and trial. We also need to put in place other institutional mechanisms to ensure the safety and security of women and children," he said.

The Prime Minister said he expected DGPs to show leadership in putting in place institutional mechanisms for the security of women and children.

Northeast situation cause for concern: PM

The security situation in the northeastern states continues to remain complex, with insurgency, extortion and agitations being the main disruptive elements, the Prime Minister said.

"Persistent efforts on part of the government have resulted in considerable progress in the dialogue with insurgent and ethnic separatist groups," he said in his address at an annual conference of top police officials.

"Further, the susceptibility of lower Assam areas and Karbi Anglong region of the state to ethnic and communal tensions, the growing mistrust between tribals and non-tribals in Bodo areas, the Garo insurgency in Meghalaya, the increasing targeting of non-Manipuris in Manipur are also areas of considerable concern," he said.

The Prime Minister said these needed to be tackled with collective resolve and firm determination.

Touching upon the Naxal problem, the Prime Minister lauded the successful conduct of polls in the naxal-affected areas of Chhattisgarh.

He called for improving the quality of governance and the pace of development in those areas.

The Prime Minister also stressed on the need to sensitize the security forces deployed in any of the naxal-affected areas to the socio-cultural practices of the local people.

"As I have said on a number of occasions, there should be nothing which affects the role of innocent citizens in leading their normal lives, and our attack on naxals and other such bad elements, should not in any way affect or disturb the livelihood patterns of local people," he added.

(Agencies)

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