‘Bond of confidence’ being built by ensuring delivery of services in remote areas
In a bid to bring villagers from remote areas of the Naxal-affected Gadchiroli district closer to the government, and to create “a bond of confidence” with law-enforcement agencies, the District Police force has opened a “single window” at police posts to help villagers enrol in State sponsored schemes, obtain important documents, and follow-up on applications with the concerned departments.
‘Police Dadalora Khidki’, which in Gondi means “a window of brother police”, is being operationalised on a pilot basis in the Bhamragad tehsil of Gadchiroli district. “Our department has the deepest penetration among all in this district for obvious reasons. We have our posts and our people go to the remotest of villages. We realised that this network can be used not only for the maintenance of law and order but also as a mode to help villagers who struggle to access basic rights,” said Ankit Goyal, Superintendent of Police, Gadchiroli.
The “single window” at police posts helps villagers with as many as 12 government schemes, including the Sanjay Gandhi Niradhar Anudan Yojana, Shravanbal Seva Rajya Nivruttivetan Yojana, Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme, Indira Gandhi National Widow Pension Scheme, National Family Benefit Scheme, ration card, income certificate, domicile certificate, farmland ownership documents, certificates for landless labourers, caste certificates and non-creamy layer certificates.
“We are doing this in coordination with other departments and only in remote areas, where it is extremely difficult to ensure delivery of services. We do all the paperwork for them and even follow-up with the concerned department to get approvals,” said Mr. Goyal.
Last month, 13 Naxals were killed in Gadchiroli’s forest area by the District Police. Gadchiroli, with its large tribal population, and location bordering Chhattisgarh and Telangana, has been witnessing Left Wing Extremism (LWE) for over three decades now.
Mr. Goyal added that the battle against the Naxal influence in the area had to be ideological as well. “Naxals tell these villagers that the state does nothing for them. We have to fill that trust deficit created by the Naxals. If the villagers come to us and we deliver their needs, it will strengthen the bond between us,” he said.
As a part of the initiative, police personnel reach out to villages, hold meetings with villagers, and record common grievances. Villagers are then introduced to various schemes implemented by the government. Thereafter, necessary documents and forms are collected at the police station from the applicants, and online applications filled up. Regular follow-ups ensure the applications reach the concerned agencies and the benefits become available.
Mr. Goyal plans to extend the “single window” to other remote police posts by June 15.
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