There is a website called I paid a bribe where people update their experience when they had to pay a bribe for being served by the government officials. This is my recollection of one such case where I had a first hand experience with the apathy and corruption of Indian Police.
After getting a job in Chennai, I started working in an IT Park at the Taramani Road. This was a plush IT park with a famous food court and all sorts of facilities including, even a bar. However, there was one small problem. Somehow, they did not take into account the number of people who will be working inside those buildings and created the parking lot a bit too small. So even if one worked inside, he would be allowed in with his vehicle only if he had a pass issued by this park. Citing space constraints, the IT park management would not issue any more passes and I ended up being forced to park my two-wheeler outside.
One fine evening, when I came out of the office I found that my bike was gone – stolen. When I asked the Security guard of my building, he just shrugged and said, “No guarantee on vehicles parked outside.” Those morons would not allow you to take your vehicle in and then will not even assume any responsibility when it gets stolen from outside, because of their stubborn-ness.
Anyway, I was advised to lodge a FIR with the police and went to the Velacheri Police Station in the night. This was my first visit to a police station and I was clearly not very comfortable. We were sent to the Inspector – Crime who heard us for say – 45 seconds and then started scolding us. He virtually made me feel like a criminal, guilty of letting my bike get stolen. Finally he asked me to come the next day for the FIR as no body was there to write the report. So much so for the “First Information” Report.
The next morning I went there and was asked to meet a Sub Inspector from the crime branch. He gave me another dose of relatively mild scolding for parking my bike outside and would not listen to my plea of innocence on the ground that it was the IT Park people who should be held responsible for not allowing me in. Finally he said he was busy and asked me to come sometime later.
I went there again and again for nearly one week just to get the FIR filed. Sometimes the man responsible for this job would not be there and at other times he would be too busy. Although his behavior became quite friendly but he did not do his work nevertheless. Finally on my eighth visit, I gave up and asked him to either file the FIR or let me know that he will not. So in the end, he asked another guy to draft it which he did in 15 minutes.
I was given the copy of the FIR and then the guy who wrote the draft took me outside. He asked for Rs 500/- , for doing this service for which he had already been paid by the government. This was actually not a request but a demand, as if I had to pay this fee, after running around for 1 week.
This is how Police in India works. If they treat educated working class people like this, I can only imagine their behavior towards those who are visibly not so well off….