In line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision of ‘SMART policing’, Delhi Police is working on a web-based app for its beat constables to reduce paperwork and make them more efficient.
With this ‘Beatbook app’, police wants to replace the beat register where a constable has to make entries about his day-to-day activities with an electronic log book.
In police terminology, a beat is the territory that a police officer patrols.
Armed with a smart phone loaded with ‘Beatbook’, a beat constable would be connected to a centralised server through which he can seamlessly update records and fill logs from wherever he wants.
“We want to make the life of the beat constable a little simpler who is the backbone of ground policing. A lot of time is wasted in paperwork. Now, with an app he can directly feed the details on his phone and save time.
“The app will be GPS-enabled so that senior officials like SHO, ACP can track whether he is actually patrolling in his area or not,” said a senior police official.
“If he has gone for passport or licence verification of an individual, he can fill the form on the spot through the app and if all documents are in place, he can just approve it. This will not only save his time but also that of the applicant,” he added.
Modi had coined the acronym ‘SMART’ for police forces at the DGP’s conference in Guwahati in November last year.
“By ‘SMART’ policing, I mean S for strict but sensitive, M for modern and mobile, A for alert and accountable, R for reliable and responsive and T for techno-savvy and trained,” Modi had said while addressing the conference.
Although the development process of the ‘Beatbook’ is still on the drawing board, the software development work is expected to start around first or second week of April. It may take around a month to complete after which the process of testing and training might begin.
“We may be in a position to launch it in June. We receive 30 to 35 complaints a day at every police station, out of which only 30 to 40 per cent need the intervention of the SHO or other higher officials which means most of the things can be sorted out at the junior level. Digitising basic policing nitty-gritties will ensure transparency and increase efficiency,” the official added.
For example, if a beat constable reaches a crime scene, he can click pictures with his phone and upload them on the app which can be accessed by his seniors who can then issue instructions to him right away, he added.
Delhi Police has already launched a number of apps like ‘Himmat’ for women safety, lost report app, traffic police app for public consumption but ‘Beatapp’ will be the first for its personnel.