The Captain Amarinder Singh led Council of Ministers on Wednesday paved the way for Punjab Police to become India’s first police force to draw civilians as domain experts in IT/Digital, Legal Forensics and Finance to give a high quality cutting edge to its investigation functions.As many as 798 such experts will be recruited directly as plainclothes Civilian Support Staff for the Punjab Investigation Bureau, which is all set to get a dose of fresh expert blood and a qualitative edge with the induction of a total of 4251 personnel, across different ranks and positions, as a result of the restructuring of the Punjab Police department.The restructuring was approved by the Cabinet, led by the Chief Minister, at a VC meeting, according to an official spokesperson. The restructuring, which will enable the Bureau to make direct recruitments in the ranks of Sub-Inspectors/Head Constables and Constables, will be done in a revenue-neutral manner, by abolishing 4849 existing posts, thus ensuring that there is no additional financial burden on the state exchequer, an official spokesperson said.As per provisional plans, direct recruitment of 1481 police officers will be undertaken across ranks (297 SIs, 811 Head Constables and 373 Constables), which would be a game changer as they will infuse fresh blood that will bring in the requisite skill-sets, expertise and experience to carry out specialised investigations, such a cyber investigations, financial investigations for economic crimes, etc.
This will bring about a qualitative change in the investigation process, which is currently in the purview of the general cops in the Punjab Investigation Bureau, that was set up in 2015. It would help improve the quality of investigations in NDPS cases against drug smugglers and suppliers. Such recruitments of graduates in law, forensics and commerce & other domains would also give an opportunity to the educated youth of Punjab in getting jobs and making careers in the Punjab Police service.These fresh recruitments would be done after taking out these posts from the purview of the Subordinate Service Selection Board through Police Recruitment Board. This will enable the Bureau to also fill 100% posts (159 posts) of Ministerial Staff as per existing Punjab Police Ministerial Staff Rules and 798 posts of Civilian Support Staff as per the new proposed service rules. The remaining 1947 posts of Subordinate Ranks (Inspector to Constables) out of the total 4521 posts sanctioned in Punjab Bureau of Investigation would initially be filled up by deputation from Punjab Police and, thereafter, by promotion from the ranks of Punjab Bureau of Investigation.The Cabinet has also accordingly approved "The Punjab Police Investigation Cadre Subordinate Ranks (Appointment and Conditions of Service) Rules, 2020" to govern the recruitment/appointment and the conditions of service of the Subordinate Ranks (Constables to Inspectors) of the Punjab Bureau of Investigation Cadre.The restructuring would help improve efficiency, reduce delays and ensure effective supervision of investigations, thereby attaining the objectives as laid down by the Supreme Court in the Prakash Singh Case.The Punjab Bureau of Investigation would basically deal with five types of serious criminal cases i.e. Homicide & Forensic (H&F) Unit, Crime against Women and Children (CAW & C) Unit, Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Unit, Special Crime (SC) Unit and Economic Offences & Cyber Crime (EO&CC) Unit. These constitute around 14-15% of the state’s total crime.