Setup under federalism still unclear, but police seek 22,000 more personnel

Published On: September 21, 2017 06:56 AM NPT By: Kosh Raj Koirala  | @KoshRKoirala

KATHMANDU, Sept 21: Even as the structure of the police organization under the federal setup is yet to be finalized, Nepal Police has forwarded a proposal to recruit over 22,000 new personnel purportedly for deployment under the provincial police forces.

Highly-placed government sources said a proposal to recruit 22,025 police personnel of various ranks is currently being discussed at the Home Ministry for necessary approval, as a section of senior police officers is lobbying hard to get  early promotions as a “federal dividend”.

Although there is a constitutional provision that each provincial government shall have its own police organization, the proposal hastily introduced by the “federal police” is widely seen as a move to benefit police officers in early promotions as this step will increase the size of the police organization. 

While the Home Ministry has approved the proposal, the Ministry of General Administration and the Ministry Finance have expressed serious reservations. The proposal is currently under discussion at the Home Ministry.

“Recruitment of additional police personnel by the center is likely to cause a serious problem while deploying them as provincial police. Clearly, the proposal brought now even without having clarity on the new police structure under the federal set up has not come with good intentions,” said an official familiar with the development.

While forming the Armed Police Force (APF) back in 2001 to fight the Maoist insurgency, each Nepal Police and Nepal Army member joining the new security agency was given one promotion. The recruitment of 22,000 police personnel in the organization, which already has 72,000 personnel will pave the way for creating additional vacancies -- mainly from Deputy Superintendents of Police (DSP) to Additional Inspectors General (AIGs).

Earlier, seven new vacancies for AIG were created in the name of creating a Federal Police Unit Office in each of the seven provinces, without  first conducting any O&M (organization and management) study.

While the recruitment of such a large number of police personnel will automatically provide early promotions, mainly to inspectors, the same personnel, officials fear, may seek another promotion for being deputed  under the provinces. 

Officials at the Ministries of Finance and General Administration, according to sources, have maintained that fresh recruitment of police personnel should be done directly by the provincial governments concerned so that there won’t be any problem in their deployment. The suggestion of the two ministries comes in the wake of the government having a hard time deploying civil servants under provincial governments, as they have sought promotions and other benefits.

Home Ministry spokesperson Ram Krishna Subedi said he cannot comment on the matter currently under discussion. “Our population has already reached 30 million. If you look at the ratio between police and population size around the world, we may have to recruit a large number of police personnel. So we need more police personnel,” Subedi told Republica.

Nepal Police spokesman, Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Manoj Neupane, said the matter is currently being discussed. “It will be clear as to how many police personnel are required only after there is clarity on the structure of provincial police,” Neupane said.

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