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Overview:

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is India’s largest paramilitary force and one of seven Central Police Forces (CPFs) controlled by the Ministry of Home Affairs. The central government designed the force to deploy quickly to aid state government forces during crises. CRPF is the only CPF tasked with the full spectrum of internal security duties, from counterinsurgency and counterterrorism to riot and crowd control to infrastructure protection. It also participates in UN peacekeeping missions.

 

The CPRF has recently increased it profile through rapid deployments to various states to mitigate growing internal security threats like insurgencies and communal tensions. While CPRF’s presence helps protect life and property, it has come under fire for its lax accountability, alleged human rights violations, and leadership often perceived as incompetent.

more
History:

CRPF traces its legacy to the British Raj. In the years leading up to independence, rising political discontent led to demonstrations and riots, necessitating more police to augment state forces and help princely states maintain control of citizenry. Rather than enlarging state police forces, the Raj founded the Crown Representative Police (CRP) on July 27, 1939, in what is now Madhya Pradesh.

 

The CRP initially assisted princely states in controlling unrest and maintaining law and order. But like most colonial bodies, the CRP also protected British residents and interests. Arthur Cunningham Lothian, the resident for the princely state of Rajputana, oversaw the CPRF with his police advisor, A.G. Phillips. Rajputana governed the force and Phillips became its first inspector general.

 

At first, CRP’s lone battalion handled everything from insurgency to banditry to guarding prisoners of war. CRP’s success led to the addition of two more companies in 1946. After independence in 1947, the new Indian government began overseeing the force, deploying the CRP to areas mired in post-partition tumult and violence. With increasing threats to domestic peace, the government raised a second CRP battalion in 1948.

 

Despite CRP’s operational success, some leaders in newly independent India regarded the force as a colonial vestige and called for its dissolution. But Nehru believed in a central force. As a compromise, the government passed the Central Reserve Police Force Act in 1949 to reshape the CRP. Renamed the Central Reserve Police Force, it became one of India’s armed forces, and its rules provide an administrative framework for the force.

 

Border guarding soon became the CPRF’s most important duty. A CRPF company patrolled Ladakh’s Indo-Tibetan border and India-Pakistan border in Jammu and Rajasthan. During Pakistan’s April 1965 invasion, CRPF soldiers assisted Gujarat state police forces in repelling the attack. During its early years, the force rapidly multiplied, adding two more battalions in 1956. By 1966, CRPF boasted around 25 battalions.

 

In the last two decades, the CRPF has increasingly been used to tackle domestic insurgencies. Often heavy-handed in troubled areas, CRPF is frequently accused of rights violations by both international and domestic bodies. These alleged human rights abuses remain a stain on its record.

more
What it Does:

CRPF’s 219 battalions break down into 188 Executive Battalions, two Disaster Management Battalions, three Mahila (Female) Battalions, 10 Rapid Action Force (RAF) Battalions, five Signal Battalions, 10 Commando Battalions for Resolute Action (CoBRA) Battalions, and one Special Duty Group. Force headquarters, led by a director general, comprises the directorates of administration, personnel, training, operations, provisioning, communication, finance and accounts, and medical.

CRPF training facilities include the Internal Security Academy, CRPF Academy, Central Training Colleges, Recruit Training Centre’s Counterinsurgency and Anti-terrorist schools, training schools for Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), an Intelligence School, a catering school and a training center for non-lethal weapons.

As an all-purpose security force, the CRPF’s mandate includes the following duties:

Internal Security and Associated Duties

  • Counterterrorism, counter-militancy, and counterinsurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir, the Northeast and the Naxal corridor.
  • Crowd and riot control during unrest. CRPF battalions, for example, attempted to maintain law and order during Gujarat’s 2001 communal riots.
  • Security for major national events, especially elections in sensitive areas and the annual Amarnath Yatra in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • VIP and VVIP protection: 7.5% of the force is deployed for the security of VIPs mostly in northeastern states, Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, and Andhra Pradesh. CRPF cadres also guard the New Delhi’s Parliament House and the residence/offices of India’s Prime Minister, various Union Ministers, and other important government figures.

 

Infrastructure protection

  • The CRPF protects vital installations such as airports, railway stations, and power stations. About 17.5% of CRPF personnel guard important central and state government installations in areas affected by insurgency.
  • The force also guards contentious religious sites like the shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi and Raghunath Temple in Jammu, the hotly disputed Ram Janam Bhoomi/Babri Masjid in Ayodhya, Kashi Vishawanath Temple and Gyanvapi Mosque in Varanasi, Krishna Janam Bhoomi and Shahi Idgah Masjid in Mathura.  


Disaster Management/Rescue and Relief Operations

  • CRPF established the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), a National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) entity, in 2005. The NDRF’s two battalions are located in Pune, Maharashtra and Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
  • CRPF personnel aided in 2007 and 2008 flood operations as well as local emergencies like the collapse of a hotel building in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. Battalions also aid in rescue and relief operations.
     

Training

Peacekeeping

  • CRPF frequently deploys to foreign nations as part of UN peacekeeping missions in Namibia, Somalia, Haiti, Maldives, Bosnia, and Kosovo.  A female battalion recently deployed to Liberia.
  • CRPF personnel helped the International Peacekeeping Force in Sri Lanka.

 

Environmental Protection

  • CRPF maintains a “Green Force” to fight timber smuggling and other environmental crime.

 

Rapid Action Force (RAF)

  • The Rapid Action Force (RAF) is a specialized 10-battalion CRPF component tasked with containing communal violence. Since its 1992 founding, it’s been deployed nationwide to primarily handle religious disputes but also during natural calamities, health emergencies, and to maintain security on sensitive occasions.
  • Additionally, RAF undertakes civil affairs missions, such as literacy camps for children and adults, medical camps, and infrastructure construction.
     

Commando Battalions for Resolute Action (CoBRA)

  • After regular troops failed to contain the Naxals, CPRF established CoBRA in 2008. CoBRA is one of the few CRPF units trained in counterinsurgency. CoBRA battalions deploy in areas affected by leftwing extremism.
     
more
Where Does the Money Go:

While CRPF’s actual budget breakdown is not available, based on the size of the force, its operational tempo, and future plans, reasonable assumptions can be made about its budget allocations.

 

With more than 200 battalions, a constant stream of new trainees, and ambitious expansion plans, most of the budget is allocated to personnel costs, including salary, uniforms, equipment, housing etc. CRPF has also begun creating new training facilities, both for recruit training and specialized training, and a good chunk of the budget is most likely devoted to these endeavors. The major portion of its operational budget goes to fighting the Maoists. CRPF is also gradually reducing its presence in Kashmir.

more
Controversies:

CRPF Accused of Human Rights Violations
Like many of India’s armed forces, CRPF is embroiled in multiple controversies over alleged human and civil rights violations, particularly in the Northeast and the Naxal belt.  The force is regularly accused of murder, rape, unlawful and arbitrary detention, destruction of homes and property, corruption, physical and psychological torture, theft, smuggling, and harassment. The force has also been criticized for the alleged denial of economic, social, and cultural rights to indigenous populations in northeastern regions.

 

An Asian Center for Human Rights Armed Forces reports found that the alleged violations took place under the cover of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act of 1958, which grants them virtual impunity in the North East and Jammu and Kashmir.

The federal government’s unwillingness to reexamine and amend the act to be able to prosecute and hold soldiers accountable makes CRPF very unpopular in Kashmir and the Northeast.

 

INDIA: Extreme Abuse of Power by the Central Reserve Police Force in Manipur (Asian Human Rights Commission)

Fear of Rape: The Experience of Women in Northeast India (by Devi Yengkhom & Meihoubam Rakesh, Asian Human Rights Commission)

CRPF Denies Rights Violation Charge (Times of India)

Jharkhand - Fact Finding Report on Atrocities Committed by CRPF and Police in Saranda (Sanhati)

India: Handing Explosives to the Maoists (Asian Center for Human Rights) (pdf)

Torture in India 2011 (Asian Center for Human Rights) (pdf)

Residents Clash with CRPF (The Telegraph)

India Quarterly Human Rights Report (Asian Center for Human Rights) (pdf)

 

CRPF Suicide and Fratricide Epidemic

A string of fratricides and suicides in CRPF ranks have highlighted the psychological toll of continuous deployment in highly stressful environments. CRPF leads all central police and paramilitary forces in instances of personnel killing themselves or killing their comrades. More than 150 soldiers committed suicide from 2007 to 2011.

 

In July 2010, in what was considered the worst incident to date, Head Constable Harpinder Singh killed six colleagues before turning his gun on himself.

 

Alcohol and drugs play a role in the violence. Singh reportedly began shooting when fellow soldiers threatened to report him for drinking. Most fratricides are committed under the influence of alcohol. An internal survey from 2006 revealed that more than 400 soldiers were addicted to drugs and alcohol. The CRPF’s expanded role in fighting Maoists helped lead to an increase in alcohol consumption to relieve combat stress. 

 

Suicide and Fratricide in Paramilitary Forces: CRPF Leads the Chart (Times of India)

7 Die as Fire within Bleeds CRPF (The Telegraph)

Two CRPF Troopers Kill Each Other in Assam (Deccan Herald)

CRPF Men Cock a Snook at Liquor Ban (by Amit Gupta, The Telegraph)

10% of CRPF Could Turn Alcoholics (by Vishwa Mohan, Times of India)

In Kashmir, CRPF Battles Stress, Suicide (by Cordelia Jenkins, Mint)

 

Massive Attrition Rate

Another major issue facing the CRPF is its high attrition rate. Attrition problems are usually associated with officers who leave the CRPF for better jobs and higher pay in the private sector. In February 2012, P. Chidambaram, then Union Minister for Home Affairs, met with the heads of the central police forces to discuss this issue.

 

DGs to Focus on Alarming Attrition in Central Forces (by Rakesh Singh, The Pioneer)

CRPF Officers Quit the Force and Seek Greener Pastures (by Kumar Rakesh, India

Today)

more
Suggested Reforms:

Clarify the CPRF’s Role

After the Kargil war in 1999, the Group of Ministers (GoM), based on suggestions by the Task Force on Internal Security, recommended that the CRPF lead India’s counterinsurgency operations. While this recommendation was implemented, necessary measures required for the success of this plan were not implemented. Although a flurry of recent activities, including the creation of new training camps and specialized centers indicates an attempt to create a counterinsurgency specific force, CRPF remains far from being a specialized entity able to deal with the Naxal threat. A primary reason for this appears to be the plethora of responsibilities of the force (as explained above). In recognition of this situation, the CRPF is sometimes jokingly referred to as the “Chalte Raho Pyare Force” (Carry on Marching Force).

 

A significant number of CRPF personnel are deployed for duties other than counterinsurgency or direct maintenance of law and order. Just recently the force was ordered by a Delhi Court to protect witnesses. A Kerala High Court suggested using CRPF personnel for protection duties at a waste disposal plan, citing the ineffectiveness of the state police. If that was not enough, the Higher Secondary Council used CRPF to prevent cheating on board exams. The freewheeling use of CRPF capabilities has prevented the force from becoming the specialized unit that GoM had originally envisioned. The current state of rapid expansion and the lack of necessary infrastructure is bound to exacerbate CRPF’s problems.

 

In order to be more effective in its primary mission, CRPF needs a clearly defined role. This requires the restructuring of India’s central forces. CPF’s ought to be consolidated either under a single command or according to primary duties: internal security, border security, and infrastructure security, thereby reducing redundancy and allowing for effective execution of assigned duties.

 

Central Forces Can't Do State Police's Job (by Prakash Singh, Times of India)

Green Light for 17 CRPF Camps - Forest Clearance for Remaining Seven Posts in Saranda Soon (by Kumud Jenamani, The Telegraph)

India’s Anti-Maoist Operations: Where Are The Special Forces? (Eurasia Review)

Delhi Court Orders CRPF Deployment at Mirchpur (The Hindu)

Kerala High Court for Deploying CRPF at Vilappil (Times of India)

Time to Merge Troops under Home Ministry (by Nitin Pai, Daily News & Analysis)

 

 

more
Debate:

Armed Forces Special Powers Act

Background

After the killing of 112 protesters in 2010, the debate over revocation of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (APSPA) again heated up. First enacted on August 18, 1958, to stanch an insurgency in the Naga Hills, the law has remained in effect in significant segments of the seven states of Northeast India and, since 1990, in Jammu and Kashmir. In Kashmir and Northeastern states like Manipur, the law provides legal cover for Indian security forces to commit significant human rights abuses. Under the law, it’s virtually impossible to bring soldiers to trial for killings, abductions, torture and forced disappearances, even with overwhelming evidence of wrongdoing. In many unprovoked civilian killings, personnel have stage-managed bodies to make the deaths seem the result of an ambush by militants.

 

Pro-AFSPA

India’s armed forces resist any effort to end, amend or curtail the rights granted to them under this law. Leaders of the armed forces frequently argue that if they eliminate AFSPA from part or all of Kashmir, it will allow militants to freely operate. As General T.K Sapru told NDTV, “The Army’s concern is that if you have a contingency where you want to deploy the Army on counterinsurgency operations, then you have to give them this Act. Without that, they can’t operate. That’s the basic thing.”

 

Anti-AFSPA

The anti-AFSPA side enjoys widespread support from vastly different constituencies. Many everyday people in Kashmir see the AFSPA as the extreme manifestation of an Indian occupation that begins with frequent stop-and-frisks at traffic-choking roadblocks and checkpoints and ends with soldiers gunning down people without fear of repercussions. The Indian military has devoted little attention to winning the hearts and minds in Kashmir, and the AFSPA is its greatest liability.

 

Those citizens are joined in their oppositions by politicians from across Kashmir’s ideological spectrum: from hardline separatists like Syed Ali Geelani to the pro-India chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Omar Abdullah.

 

In March 2012, the UN’s special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns, described the act as having “no role to play in a democracy.” Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have repeatedly echoed this call.

 

India: Briefing. The Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) Review Committee Takes One Step Forward and Two Backwards (Amnesty International)

Kashmir: The View From Srinagar (International Crisis Group) (pdf)
India: Repeal Armed Forces Special Powers Act (Human Rights Watch)
India: Accept UN Rights Body Recommendations (Human Rights Watch)

Omar Completes 3 Years in Office, Says AFSPA Issue Not on Backburner (Press Trust of India)

Kashmir: The Riddle of AFSPA (by Sreenivasan Jain, NDTV)

 

 

more
Former Directors:

Pranay Sahay

Pranay Sahay served as the CRPF director general from October 18, 2012, until his retirement in July 31, 2013.

 

A 1975 batch IPS officer from the Manipur-Tripura cadre, Sahay served as a sub divisional police officer in Khowai, Tripura.

 

Other assignments included the assistant director general and later director general of police for Tripura, special director general (East) of the Border Security Force, inspector general (Western Sector) of the Central Industrial Security Force, additional director general (Northern Sector) of the Central Reserve Police Force, and secretary (security) in the Cabinet Secretariat.

 

Prior to his appointment as director general, Sahay served as SSB director general from November 2011 until October 18, 2012.

more

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Founded: 1939 (as the Crown Representative Police)
Annual Budget: Rs.7827.32 crore ($1.5 billion)
Employees: 288,000
Central Reserve Police Force
  • Latest News
Bookmark and Share
Overview:

The Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) is India’s largest paramilitary force and one of seven Central Police Forces (CPFs) controlled by the Ministry of Home Affairs. The central government designed the force to deploy quickly to aid state government forces during crises. CRPF is the only CPF tasked with the full spectrum of internal security duties, from counterinsurgency and counterterrorism to riot and crowd control to infrastructure protection. It also participates in UN peacekeeping missions.

 

The CPRF has recently increased it profile through rapid deployments to various states to mitigate growing internal security threats like insurgencies and communal tensions. While CPRF’s presence helps protect life and property, it has come under fire for its lax accountability, alleged human rights violations, and leadership often perceived as incompetent.

more
History:

CRPF traces its legacy to the British Raj. In the years leading up to independence, rising political discontent led to demonstrations and riots, necessitating more police to augment state forces and help princely states maintain control of citizenry. Rather than enlarging state police forces, the Raj founded the Crown Representative Police (CRP) on July 27, 1939, in what is now Madhya Pradesh.

 

The CRP initially assisted princely states in controlling unrest and maintaining law and order. But like most colonial bodies, the CRP also protected British residents and interests. Arthur Cunningham Lothian, the resident for the princely state of Rajputana, oversaw the CPRF with his police advisor, A.G. Phillips. Rajputana governed the force and Phillips became its first inspector general.

 

At first, CRP’s lone battalion handled everything from insurgency to banditry to guarding prisoners of war. CRP’s success led to the addition of two more companies in 1946. After independence in 1947, the new Indian government began overseeing the force, deploying the CRP to areas mired in post-partition tumult and violence. With increasing threats to domestic peace, the government raised a second CRP battalion in 1948.

 

Despite CRP’s operational success, some leaders in newly independent India regarded the force as a colonial vestige and called for its dissolution. But Nehru believed in a central force. As a compromise, the government passed the Central Reserve Police Force Act in 1949 to reshape the CRP. Renamed the Central Reserve Police Force, it became one of India’s armed forces, and its rules provide an administrative framework for the force.

 

Border guarding soon became the CPRF’s most important duty. A CRPF company patrolled Ladakh’s Indo-Tibetan border and India-Pakistan border in Jammu and Rajasthan. During Pakistan’s April 1965 invasion, CRPF soldiers assisted Gujarat state police forces in repelling the attack. During its early years, the force rapidly multiplied, adding two more battalions in 1956. By 1966, CRPF boasted around 25 battalions.

 

In the last two decades, the CRPF has increasingly been used to tackle domestic insurgencies. Often heavy-handed in troubled areas, CRPF is frequently accused of rights violations by both international and domestic bodies. These alleged human rights abuses remain a stain on its record.

more
What it Does:

CRPF’s 219 battalions break down into 188 Executive Battalions, two Disaster Management Battalions, three Mahila (Female) Battalions, 10 Rapid Action Force (RAF) Battalions, five Signal Battalions, 10 Commando Battalions for Resolute Action (CoBRA) Battalions, and one Special Duty Group. Force headquarters, led by a director general, comprises the directorates of administration, personnel, training, operations, provisioning, communication, finance and accounts, and medical.

CRPF training facilities include the Internal Security Academy, CRPF Academy, Central Training Colleges, Recruit Training Centre’s Counterinsurgency and Anti-terrorist schools, training schools for Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), an Intelligence School, a catering school and a training center for non-lethal weapons.

As an all-purpose security force, the CRPF’s mandate includes the following duties:

Internal Security and Associated Duties

  • Counterterrorism, counter-militancy, and counterinsurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir, the Northeast and the Naxal corridor.
  • Crowd and riot control during unrest. CRPF battalions, for example, attempted to maintain law and order during Gujarat’s 2001 communal riots.
  • Security for major national events, especially elections in sensitive areas and the annual Amarnath Yatra in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • VIP and VVIP protection: 7.5% of the force is deployed for the security of VIPs mostly in northeastern states, Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, and Andhra Pradesh. CRPF cadres also guard the New Delhi’s Parliament House and the residence/offices of India’s Prime Minister, various Union Ministers, and other important government figures.

 

Infrastructure protection

  • The CRPF protects vital installations such as airports, railway stations, and power stations. About 17.5% of CRPF personnel guard important central and state government installations in areas affected by insurgency.
  • The force also guards contentious religious sites like the shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi and Raghunath Temple in Jammu, the hotly disputed Ram Janam Bhoomi/Babri Masjid in Ayodhya, Kashi Vishawanath Temple and Gyanvapi Mosque in Varanasi, Krishna Janam Bhoomi and Shahi Idgah Masjid in Mathura.  


Disaster Management/Rescue and Relief Operations

  • CRPF established the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), a National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) entity, in 2005. The NDRF’s two battalions are located in Pune, Maharashtra and Gandhinagar, Gujarat.
  • CRPF personnel aided in 2007 and 2008 flood operations as well as local emergencies like the collapse of a hotel building in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. Battalions also aid in rescue and relief operations.
     

Training

Peacekeeping

  • CRPF frequently deploys to foreign nations as part of UN peacekeeping missions in Namibia, Somalia, Haiti, Maldives, Bosnia, and Kosovo.  A female battalion recently deployed to Liberia.
  • CRPF personnel helped the International Peacekeeping Force in Sri Lanka.

 

Environmental Protection

  • CRPF maintains a “Green Force” to fight timber smuggling and other environmental crime.

 

Rapid Action Force (RAF)

  • The Rapid Action Force (RAF) is a specialized 10-battalion CRPF component tasked with containing communal violence. Since its 1992 founding, it’s been deployed nationwide to primarily handle religious disputes but also during natural calamities, health emergencies, and to maintain security on sensitive occasions.
  • Additionally, RAF undertakes civil affairs missions, such as literacy camps for children and adults, medical camps, and infrastructure construction.
     

Commando Battalions for Resolute Action (CoBRA)

  • After regular troops failed to contain the Naxals, CPRF established CoBRA in 2008. CoBRA is one of the few CRPF units trained in counterinsurgency. CoBRA battalions deploy in areas affected by leftwing extremism.
     
more
Where Does the Money Go:

While CRPF’s actual budget breakdown is not available, based on the size of the force, its operational tempo, and future plans, reasonable assumptions can be made about its budget allocations.

 

With more than 200 battalions, a constant stream of new trainees, and ambitious expansion plans, most of the budget is allocated to personnel costs, including salary, uniforms, equipment, housing etc. CRPF has also begun creating new training facilities, both for recruit training and specialized training, and a good chunk of the budget is most likely devoted to these endeavors. The major portion of its operational budget goes to fighting the Maoists. CRPF is also gradually reducing its presence in Kashmir.

more
Controversies:

CRPF Accused of Human Rights Violations
Like many of India’s armed forces, CRPF is embroiled in multiple controversies over alleged human and civil rights violations, particularly in the Northeast and the Naxal belt.  The force is regularly accused of murder, rape, unlawful and arbitrary detention, destruction of homes and property, corruption, physical and psychological torture, theft, smuggling, and harassment. The force has also been criticized for the alleged denial of economic, social, and cultural rights to indigenous populations in northeastern regions.

 

An Asian Center for Human Rights Armed Forces reports found that the alleged violations took place under the cover of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act of 1958, which grants them virtual impunity in the North East and Jammu and Kashmir.

The federal government’s unwillingness to reexamine and amend the act to be able to prosecute and hold soldiers accountable makes CRPF very unpopular in Kashmir and the Northeast.

 

INDIA: Extreme Abuse of Power by the Central Reserve Police Force in Manipur (Asian Human Rights Commission)

Fear of Rape: The Experience of Women in Northeast India (by Devi Yengkhom & Meihoubam Rakesh, Asian Human Rights Commission)

CRPF Denies Rights Violation Charge (Times of India)

Jharkhand - Fact Finding Report on Atrocities Committed by CRPF and Police in Saranda (Sanhati)

India: Handing Explosives to the Maoists (Asian Center for Human Rights) (pdf)

Torture in India 2011 (Asian Center for Human Rights) (pdf)

Residents Clash with CRPF (The Telegraph)

India Quarterly Human Rights Report (Asian Center for Human Rights) (pdf)

 

CRPF Suicide and Fratricide Epidemic

A string of fratricides and suicides in CRPF ranks have highlighted the psychological toll of continuous deployment in highly stressful environments. CRPF leads all central police and paramilitary forces in instances of personnel killing themselves or killing their comrades. More than 150 soldiers committed suicide from 2007 to 2011.

 

In July 2010, in what was considered the worst incident to date, Head Constable Harpinder Singh killed six colleagues before turning his gun on himself.

 

Alcohol and drugs play a role in the violence. Singh reportedly began shooting when fellow soldiers threatened to report him for drinking. Most fratricides are committed under the influence of alcohol. An internal survey from 2006 revealed that more than 400 soldiers were addicted to drugs and alcohol. The CRPF’s expanded role in fighting Maoists helped lead to an increase in alcohol consumption to relieve combat stress. 

 

Suicide and Fratricide in Paramilitary Forces: CRPF Leads the Chart (Times of India)

7 Die as Fire within Bleeds CRPF (The Telegraph)

Two CRPF Troopers Kill Each Other in Assam (Deccan Herald)

CRPF Men Cock a Snook at Liquor Ban (by Amit Gupta, The Telegraph)

10% of CRPF Could Turn Alcoholics (by Vishwa Mohan, Times of India)

In Kashmir, CRPF Battles Stress, Suicide (by Cordelia Jenkins, Mint)

 

Massive Attrition Rate

Another major issue facing the CRPF is its high attrition rate. Attrition problems are usually associated with officers who leave the CRPF for better jobs and higher pay in the private sector. In February 2012, P. Chidambaram, then Union Minister for Home Affairs, met with the heads of the central police forces to discuss this issue.

 

DGs to Focus on Alarming Attrition in Central Forces (by Rakesh Singh, The Pioneer)

CRPF Officers Quit the Force and Seek Greener Pastures (by Kumar Rakesh, India

Today)

more
Suggested Reforms:

Clarify the CPRF’s Role

After the Kargil war in 1999, the Group of Ministers (GoM), based on suggestions by the Task Force on Internal Security, recommended that the CRPF lead India’s counterinsurgency operations. While this recommendation was implemented, necessary measures required for the success of this plan were not implemented. Although a flurry of recent activities, including the creation of new training camps and specialized centers indicates an attempt to create a counterinsurgency specific force, CRPF remains far from being a specialized entity able to deal with the Naxal threat. A primary reason for this appears to be the plethora of responsibilities of the force (as explained above). In recognition of this situation, the CRPF is sometimes jokingly referred to as the “Chalte Raho Pyare Force” (Carry on Marching Force).

 

A significant number of CRPF personnel are deployed for duties other than counterinsurgency or direct maintenance of law and order. Just recently the force was ordered by a Delhi Court to protect witnesses. A Kerala High Court suggested using CRPF personnel for protection duties at a waste disposal plan, citing the ineffectiveness of the state police. If that was not enough, the Higher Secondary Council used CRPF to prevent cheating on board exams. The freewheeling use of CRPF capabilities has prevented the force from becoming the specialized unit that GoM had originally envisioned. The current state of rapid expansion and the lack of necessary infrastructure is bound to exacerbate CRPF’s problems.

 

In order to be more effective in its primary mission, CRPF needs a clearly defined role. This requires the restructuring of India’s central forces. CPF’s ought to be consolidated either under a single command or according to primary duties: internal security, border security, and infrastructure security, thereby reducing redundancy and allowing for effective execution of assigned duties.

 

Central Forces Can't Do State Police's Job (by Prakash Singh, Times of India)

Green Light for 17 CRPF Camps - Forest Clearance for Remaining Seven Posts in Saranda Soon (by Kumud Jenamani, The Telegraph)

India’s Anti-Maoist Operations: Where Are The Special Forces? (Eurasia Review)

Delhi Court Orders CRPF Deployment at Mirchpur (The Hindu)

Kerala High Court for Deploying CRPF at Vilappil (Times of India)

Time to Merge Troops under Home Ministry (by Nitin Pai, Daily News & Analysis)

 

 

more
Debate:

Armed Forces Special Powers Act

Background

After the killing of 112 protesters in 2010, the debate over revocation of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (APSPA) again heated up. First enacted on August 18, 1958, to stanch an insurgency in the Naga Hills, the law has remained in effect in significant segments of the seven states of Northeast India and, since 1990, in Jammu and Kashmir. In Kashmir and Northeastern states like Manipur, the law provides legal cover for Indian security forces to commit significant human rights abuses. Under the law, it’s virtually impossible to bring soldiers to trial for killings, abductions, torture and forced disappearances, even with overwhelming evidence of wrongdoing. In many unprovoked civilian killings, personnel have stage-managed bodies to make the deaths seem the result of an ambush by militants.

 

Pro-AFSPA

India’s armed forces resist any effort to end, amend or curtail the rights granted to them under this law. Leaders of the armed forces frequently argue that if they eliminate AFSPA from part or all of Kashmir, it will allow militants to freely operate. As General T.K Sapru told NDTV, “The Army’s concern is that if you have a contingency where you want to deploy the Army on counterinsurgency operations, then you have to give them this Act. Without that, they can’t operate. That’s the basic thing.”

 

Anti-AFSPA

The anti-AFSPA side enjoys widespread support from vastly different constituencies. Many everyday people in Kashmir see the AFSPA as the extreme manifestation of an Indian occupation that begins with frequent stop-and-frisks at traffic-choking roadblocks and checkpoints and ends with soldiers gunning down people without fear of repercussions. The Indian military has devoted little attention to winning the hearts and minds in Kashmir, and the AFSPA is its greatest liability.

 

Those citizens are joined in their oppositions by politicians from across Kashmir’s ideological spectrum: from hardline separatists like Syed Ali Geelani to the pro-India chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Omar Abdullah.

 

In March 2012, the UN’s special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, Christof Heyns, described the act as having “no role to play in a democracy.” Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have repeatedly echoed this call.

 

India: Briefing. The Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) Review Committee Takes One Step Forward and Two Backwards (Amnesty International)

Kashmir: The View From Srinagar (International Crisis Group) (pdf)
India: Repeal Armed Forces Special Powers Act (Human Rights Watch)
India: Accept UN Rights Body Recommendations (Human Rights Watch)

Omar Completes 3 Years in Office, Says AFSPA Issue Not on Backburner (Press Trust of India)

Kashmir: The Riddle of AFSPA (by Sreenivasan Jain, NDTV)

 

 

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Former Directors:

Pranay Sahay

Pranay Sahay served as the CRPF director general from October 18, 2012, until his retirement in July 31, 2013.

 

A 1975 batch IPS officer from the Manipur-Tripura cadre, Sahay served as a sub divisional police officer in Khowai, Tripura.

 

Other assignments included the assistant director general and later director general of police for Tripura, special director general (East) of the Border Security Force, inspector general (Western Sector) of the Central Industrial Security Force, additional director general (Northern Sector) of the Central Reserve Police Force, and secretary (security) in the Cabinet Secretariat.

 

Prior to his appointment as director general, Sahay served as SSB director general from November 2011 until October 18, 2012.

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Founded: 1939 (as the Crown Representative Police)
Annual Budget: Rs.7827.32 crore ($1.5 billion)
Employees: 288,000
Central Reserve Police Force
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