Mumbai police, supported by the Tata Trusts, endeavour to bring a degree of transparency to their civil interactions
When the Mumbai Traffic Police (MTP) were exploring the feasibility of arming their cops on field with surveillance devices in order to capture evidence of their interaction with citizens to bring in a certain degree of transparency, the Joint Commissioner of Mumbai traffic police reached out to the Tata Trusts for their help in supporting a cause which is not only in society’s interest but would also promote a cordial engagement between police and citizens. The Trusts agreed to support the cause so as to add value to society at large and the police fraternity in particular.
Post initial discussions, it was decided to procure and deploy 100 Body Worn Cameras (BWCs) for use by the traffic cops on the field, as a pilot study. It was decided that MTP would take a call on whether to scale up based on the success of the pilot.
Accordingly, the Trusts’ team evaluated multiple products available in the market and shortlisted three that both offered the features desired by MTP and were cost effective. After successful demos were conducted for the MTP leadership team, the CP Plus cameras were cleared for procurement.
The Trusts not only procured the cameras and their associated central management platform, but were also instrumental in configuring and commissioning the cameras along with the associated back end systems. Not only that, the Trusts’ team worked very closely with MTP officers to plan police chowkis where the cameras were going to be used and allocated five cameras each to the 20 police chowkis. The cameras are enabled with 4G SIMs for online monitoring and video streaming.
Before going live, the identified cops from across the 20 police chowkis were given necessary training on camera operations, dos and don'ts, video backups, charging, support teams, etc. The training was conducted in the presence of Additional Commissioner of Police, MTP.
The Trusts also provided a technical executive on site at the MTP headquarters at Worli, to manage the backend monitoring system and camera usage, and to address any complaints about cameras from the cops in the field. The Trusts’ team also worked on the generation of necessary reports on the daily usage of the cameras and shared them with the MTP team.
This was the first such project for the Trusts. The Trusts are proud to partner with the Mumbai Traffic Police for this project.
The pilot project has been successfully completed with the end of 6 months’ onsite support as of February 2020. Apart from training police constables with respect to using the cameras, a constable has also been trained on using the central monitoring system. The MTP team has been managing the system and the cameras since.
Based the success of this project, the MTP has taken a call to scale up the project.