BHUBANESWAR: Quick response to emergency situations is the prerequisite of any police control room. But the commissionerate police’s modern control room (MCR) in Bhubaneswar, considered to be the best in the state, is struggling to respond to crisis situations. Last year, out of nearly 15 lakh emergency calls, the MCR could actively respond to only five percent of them. The active response entails responding to the calls by immediately mobilizing the police control room (PCR) vans to the spots.
Police sources said the MCR received altogether 1,564,125 emergency calls last year. The MCR personnel responded actively to only around 75,000 calls. The bulk of the 75,000 calls included accidents and altercations between people. In the remaining 14.89 lakh cases, the police only received the calls, gave a patient hearing to the callers and advised them to dial the nearby police stations for help.
MCR authorities said they cannot respond to all the calls owing to an acute shortage of staff. “We have only 33 PCR vans out of which five or six are not in a good condition. We need at least six personnel (mostly constables) in each vehicle. Though we have mobilized the best of our manpower resources in shifts, we managed to respond to only five percent of the calls. The government should increase our manpower and vehicle strengths,” an MCR official said.
Commissioner of police Satyajit Mohanty admitted that the five percent active response to emergency calls is abysmally poor. “We will certainly try to improve our response mechanism. Manpower shortage is a problem. However, despite constraints, the MCR responded to several emergency calls. These were mostly accident-related ones and the injured were shifted to the hospitals immediately. Now, our PCR vans have started playing the role of ambulance,” Mohanty said, adding that the PFR vans’ timely intervention helped foil at least 28 suicide bids, shift six injured stray animals to veterinary hospitals, cleared traffic jams at 671 places, rush to places that witnessed arson at 255 places and caught over 530 suspected thieves and anti-socials and handed them over to different police stations here last year.
In October last year, the commissionerate police had with the help of doctors trained PCR van personnel to respond to medical emergencies, like delivering cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to patients suffering from cardiac attack and rendering first-aid to accident victims.