Published On : Sun, Jan 15th, 2017

CCTNS, a potent, hi-tech tool in police hands to smash crime but….

Nagpur: With the launch of State Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS), the potential game changer tool that would bolster the entire police force in Maharashtra. And emerge a clear winner against crime and criminals.

However, the hi-tech system is also proving to be a sort of problem for police personnel handling the CCTNS.

Launched at the hands of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis in the presence of Governor C Vidyasagar Rao a few months back, the CCTNS aims to ensure more transparency, improve coordination between police stations, and bring more accountability. Out of 29 police stations in the city, the system has got operational in 23. Kamptee and Hingna Police Stations have been included in Nagpur Commissionerate but are connected to the system as yet. Similarly, in the newly carved police stations such as Bajaj Nagar, Shantinagar, Mankapur, Old Kamptee, the system in non-operational. The project that gained momentum in six months has now become a reality.

The ambitious project to digitize the state’s police force, CCTNS aims at creating a comprehensive and integrated system for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of policing through adopting of principle of e-Governance and creation of a nationwide networking infrastructure for evolution of IT-enabled-state-of-the-art tracking system around ‘Investigation of crime and detection of criminals’. An allocation of Rs. 2000 crore has been made for CCTNS Project.

Under the CCTNS Project, approx. 14,000 Police Stations throughout the country has been proposed to be automated beside 6000 higher offices in police hierarchy e.g. Circles, Sub-Divisions, Districts, Range, Zones, Police Headquarters, SCRBx including scientific and technical organizations having databases required for providing assistance and information for investigation and other purposes e.g. Finger Print Bureaux, Forensic Labs etc.

The system:

Under CCTNS, all police stations of the state will be linked with each other for sharing information about various crimes under their respective jurisdiction. The centre for development of advanced computing was instrumental in setting up of the 42 cyber labs across the state. Further, under the project, the state government will raise a special cyber police force of about 1000 policemen, who would be trained to handle cyber crimes. Police functioning would be citizen friendly and more transparent by automating the functioning of Police Stations. The system will assist senior Police Officers in better management of Police Force and also keep track of the progress of cases, including in courts. With this system, claimed to be the first such initiative by a state, the police will now be able to register an FIR with a single click.

Cops will have upper hand: CP

While speaking to Nagpur Today, the Commissioner of Police Dr K Venkatesham said that the CCTNS will be operational in all the police stations of city. “The Linex operating system is most secure system. Upgrade of the CCTNS is on the cards. Many of the features are going to be changed. In our meetings, serious discussions take place about the CCTNS operations. Newer developments are in the offing. Now, police stations would go hi-tech with the CCTNS functioning. The system will give police force an upper hand in dealing with crime and criminals. The CCTNS is going to be a boon for police in city as well as in the state,” the top cop declared.

CCTNS drawbacks:

Ironically, the hi-tech CCTNS has posed a series of problems for the cops. According to sources, special personnel have not been deputed to handle the system. The concerned personnel and officers of police stations will have to handle the system in accordance with their duty hours. Though those cops who have no computer knowledge have been provided training but it seems it is not sufficient. The work is being carried on the basis of roll base work. The concerned In-Charge Police Inspector of Police Station will take the decision to whom to deploy on CCTNS system or not. CCTNS (CAS) runs on core application software. The entire data base of Maharashtra is at State Data Central (SDC) in Mumbai. Some of the data is provided to SCRB-Pune and NCRB-Delhi in accordance with the requirement.

In Nagpur, for the CCTNS the concerned police stations are equipped with four computers, two printers, UPS and generator. The system is aimed at running on24X7 basis. For Internet, BSNL connectivity has been provided with. If for any reason the system goes blank, off-line facility is in place. Initially, all the works will be done off-line and once the internet service resumes, the off-line data will automatically get synced online. “E Helpline” is provided in case printer or computer goes dead or mouse goes non-functional. However, the concerned police personnel will have to lodge complaints in this regard. The complaints are redressed within 24 hours. The entire contract has been awarded to Wipro. When a complaint is filed with Wipro, a ticket number generates. If Wipro is unable to redress the complaint. Then it has to be lodged with SCRB. The FIR has to be typed cautiously.

Some of the police officials whisper to say the CCTNS company has monopoly. It has some unusual rules (policy). Other fonts in their system just don’t work. Only “Gargi” font works. Other fonts are accepted by other laptops or computers. The pendrives connected to CCTNS computers are not accepted by other computers. This flaw tests the patience of police officials. “Language” issue troubles the most. For running the CCTNS, four computers, a printer along with a generator have been provided. A battery inside the generator has also been provided. Maintenance of generator is a must. However, half of the personnel of police stations lack knowledge as how to set up the generator. Moreover, they find themselves helpless to removed stuck paper in printer. Police personnel face a piquant situation to demand papers for FIR printing. Ultimately, they have to procure the printing paper through some “financer” but it leads to FIR lodgers wait for hours to get the FIR copy. The situation prevails in almost all police stations.

The most troublesome aspect pertains to its outdated system (Linex operating system) being used for CCTNS. Interestingly, the BSNL net speed in the hi-tech CCTNS computers set up in police stations is 256 kpbs. Working in such a slow speed is a herculean task. The CCTNS is hi-tech for name’s sake but for police work it is more of a headache.

A few police officials on the condition of anonymity said that CCTNS should be updated with the time. A problem should get resolved the moment a number is dialed to helpline. Special staff should be deputed to handle the sophisticated CCTNS so that the system runs efficiently. It is must. Some official-level appointments should also be done. Shift-wise duty should be planned. According to sources, only a head constable handles the CCTNS system and also gives his service to all police stations.

By Ravikant Kamble