It is responsibility of government to ensure safety and security 24/7: Karnataka Home Min on Mysuru rape

Express News Service

BENGALURU: Home Minister Araga Jnanendra, who was severely criticised by opposition parties for being a novice to take up an important job, is upbeat after the police cracked the sensational Mysuru ganrapge case within four days. Answering his critics, he said that he has been in public life for the last four decades and been part of many important legislative committees. Excerpts…

The Mysuru gangrape case was a black mark and shook the nation’s conscience. What do you have to say about the police performance?

Students and travellers from all over the country and world visit the heritage city of Mysuru. We have a great responsibility in maintaining the peace and tranquility as well as the reputation of this city. The state police have done a commendable job by cracking the case swiftly. It is the state’s responsibility to its citizens to ensure safety and security 24/7. 

Former CM HD Kumaraswamy has said that there is corruption in the police department and policemen come across as unprofessional and crude…

Things have changed for the better now. Highly educated people, even those with post-graduation and PhDs, are joining the department. As there is a quota, a number of women too are becoming part of the force which has helped in improving the department’s image.

READ MORE | Mysuru rape case: Not a first, accused regularly targeted couples

On charges of corruption, the police are now being made to work transparently. The filing of complaints has been computerised and people coming to police stations do not have to wait for acknowledgments. Transfers have been rationalised and are being governed by the Police Establishment Board. I have warned the police personnel that anyone associated with illegal organisations and the underworld will be dealt with seriously.

You seem to be upbeat after the Mysuru police cracked the gangrape case within four days… 

Yes. In the absence of a statement from the victim, the police stitched together available technical and other evidence and hunted down the culprits. 

Congress has said Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai should have appointed someone with more experience as home minister…

I am not a newcomer and have been in public life for the last four decades. This is my fourth term in the Assembly. I have worked in several legislative committees, including the all-important Public Accounts Committee. I feel sorry for their ignorance. Congress leaders were trying to draw political mileage out of the unfortunate incident in Mysuru. Soon after I came to know of the incident, I rushed to Mysuru and was constantly monitoring the progress of the probe till the police zeroed in on the suspects.

There have been suggestions to involve citizens in policing. Do you have any plans?

We have taken several measures to involve more people in the functioning of the police. There have been recommendations from the Police Reforms Commission, National Law Commission and the Supreme Court.  We will encourage community policing.

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