Home ministry faulted over faulty equipment to Tripura Police (Lead)

March 12th, 2009 - 5:55 pm ICT by IANS  

Agartala, March 12 (IANS) The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) said in a report made public Thursday that the central home ministry was to blame for faulty communication equipment supplied to the Tripura Police.
A CAG report has also criticised the home ministry for not giving the promised funds to security forces in Tripura to take on insurgents.

According to CAG, the Police Communication Network, known as POLNET, was not functioning well because Remote Station Units in 34 of the 64 police stations in Tripura developed faults.

But no corrective action was taken to make them operational, it said.

POLNET is a satellite based integrated network that uses terminals and radio telephones to link the national capital with state capitals.

The main objective of POLNET is to share information with other police organisations within the country.

“During 2003-08, modern equipment were centrally procured by the home ministry and sent to all the states including Tripura. During installation or (later), the (Remote Station Units) were found to be faulty,” said the report, presented in the Tripura assembly Thursday.

“The desired objective of sharing and disseminating information with other police organisations and paramilitary forces could not be achieved despite spending about Rs.7.4 million,” it said.

“Inadequate planning resulted in utilisation of only 10 to 63 percent of the available funds for modernisation of state police forces during 2003-08.”

It said shortage of vehicles ranging from 43-53 percent affected the mobility of the security forces in Tripura, which shares a winding border with Bangladesh.

Also, against the projected requirement of arms and ammunition of Rs.443.8 million for 2003-08, the state police received arms and ammunition worth only Rs.30.6 million.

And just one percent of the trainees in the Tripura State Rifles personnel have been trained in counter insurgency and jungle warfare due to lack of infrastructure in the training schools, the report added.

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