HISTORY OF HYDERABAD CITY POLICE
POLICE SYSTEM DURING NIZAM PERIOD
The erstwhile State of Nizam comprised areas covered by the present Telangana of AP State, Bidar, Raichur and Gulbarga districts of present Karnataka State and Osmanabad. Bheed, Nanded, Latur, Aurangabad and Parbhani districts of the present Maharashtra State. Hyderabad was the Capital of Nizam. As per the available records, the Police Commissionerate system existed way back from the year 1847.
The Nizam of Hyderabad used to appoint the Commissioners of Police who were officers of the Hyderabad Civil Service and they used to function during his pleasure. They were answerable to the Nizam directly on various matters of policing in Hyderabad city. However, as far as administrative matters were concerned the Commissioner of Police used to correspond with the Home Department directly. The Commissioner of Police was popularly called as the “Kotwal-e-Balda” and was responsible for maintenance of law and order, prevention & detection of crime etc. The correspondence used to be only in Urdu. Kotwal enjoying a high position and look upon with great respect of fear had always been appointed from an early period and composed of various nationalities and a number of detectives.
The “Kotwal” combined in his office not only the powers and privileges of the police head but also was in enjoyment of certain judicial and civil powers. He had direct access to the king and had his ears. He was the chief adviser to the monarch in all police matters. He was primarily responsible for the maintenance of law and order, for the prevention and control of crime, and prosecution of criminals. He occupied a unique position not only in the administration of criminal justice but also a very honourable place in the king’s “Durbars” . He received the “Roznamachas” (Daily reports) from the Thanedars about the happenning in the city, kept a watch on the British Residency and maintained a number of paid informers. The “Kotwal-e-Balda” was both respected and feared by the general Public. The last of such powerful “Kotwals” was Raja Bahadur Venkatrama Reddy during the reign of Nawab Mir Osman Ali Khan, Nizam-VII. He even resolved major litigations between Gadwal and Wanaparthi “samasthans” through negotiations. In the big “Samasthans”, policing was being done by the big feudal lords, who owned vast chunks of land, and organized their respective police forces and separate judicial service.
The Head of the “Thana” (Police Station) came to be called “Amin” The rank equivalent to the inspector was known as “Sardar Amin” . The Assistant Commissioner of Police and the Deputy Commissioner were called “Madadgar Kotwal” and “Naib Kotwal” respectively. The entire city police force had distinctive uniforms and badges of rank. At the “Thana” level there was a “Jemadar” (General Duty Head Constable) and a Mohriri (Writer Head Constable). The Constable was called Barkandaz in the beginning and later called “Jawan”. He was getting Rs. 6-00 in 1902 A.D. as pay and two annas per day was his daily allowance, whenever he had to travel outside Hyderabad City.
The Judicial system prevailing in the city comprised of the Diwani Adalats (Civil Courts) and Faujdari Adalats i.e Criminal Courts, Organised in a hierarchical pattern, having both the original and appellate jurisdiction. The lowest combined criminal and civil courts under the Munsif Magistrate with 1st Class powers of the trial at the original level at all taluk headquarters.
The prosecuting agency consisted of Police functionaries of inspector rank as far as the city was concerned. They were under Naib Kotwal Seghal Jaraim i.e. Dy. Commissioner of Police Crime. The strength of city police in the early years of this century was hardly a few thousands, quite commensurate with the limited needs of the populations of Hyderabad, which was barely 2.5 lakhs, enclosed within an impregnable fort-wall running round the city. There were thirteen huge gates and as many windows which used to be closed by the Police Armed guards from dust to dawn, by an order of the City Police Commissioner. This system ensures automatic “Nakabandi” and no burglar or thief having operated in the city could dare leave the limits of the city without being caught and interrogated. The city police budget in 1906 was a meagre few lakhs. Except for Police Station “Thana and outpost “Naka” buildings, of which there was a network, there were few Administrative Police Buildings. The Past Commissioner Office “Kotwal Balda” which is more than hundred years old is situated in “Purana Haveli” locality in the heart of the old city. There were no motor vehicles, wireless equipments and telephone facility. But there many records maintained in Urdu at the P.S. level, a few obsolete fire arms and hand-cuffs and leg-lrons. The concept of respecting the rights of the individual was not at all there and criminals were dealt with harshly to say the least. Surveillance over criminals was effective and “Goondas” and rowdies were kept under check Mostly, religious processions and assemblies were in evidence those days and hardly labour or student troubles. Strikes by Government employees were unheard of and hardly any forms of protests by political parties were noticed.
In 1271 Fasli, the total police under the control of the kotwal composed, as it was comprised of Arabs, Sikhs, Bharkandazes and Harkaras numbered 1524 foot men and 136 mounted and cost Rs. 82,364/- for its maintenance.
In 1294 Fasli, a Detective police force was inaugurated. The city police had three superior officers, 2 Muhatamims, 10 Sadar Amins, 27 Amins, 3 Naib Amins, 49 Sowars, 2830 Constables of all grades, 128 Arabs and 64 miscellaneous men. The strength of the city police rose to 3434 by the year 1337 Fasli. Cases of corruption were very rare. Among all the Commissioner of Police who served during the Nizam period. Raja Bahadur Venkatram Reddy who worked for nearly 14 years created a history in the city for his outstanding police administration and he commanded a great respect among the public.
RE-ORGANISATION OF HYDERABAD CITY POLICE IN 1955
A scheme for the re-organisation of the City Police on the lines of Madras City Police was sanctioned by the Government of Hyderabad with effect from 15-07-1955 in so far as it related to the bifurcation of the duties into Law and Order and Crime and the extension of the City Police jurisdiction to the Municipal limits. Transfer of certain areas from Hyderabad Dist and the Railway Police to the City Police as proposed in the re-organisation was effected w.e.f. July 15 1955.SALIENT FEATURES
Prior to the reorganization, the circle was the unit for administrative purposes and after the deputation of the sanctioned strength to the police stations of the Circle, the surplus staff was kept at the Circle Inspectors office. The Circles inspector arranged for bandobust and night patrolling duties with these men. This was done away with and the men at the Circle Inspector’s command were distributed amongst the Police Stations. According to the reorganization scheme, each Police Station was to be provided with a sanctioned strength.
The State of Andhra Pradesh was formed on 01-11-1956 with Capital at Kurnool. Later the capital was shifted to Hyderabad. Consequent to the formation of Andhra Pradesh State, the conditions in the twin cities of Hyderabad and Secunderabad have under gone a change and the problems of Law and order, Crime, Traffic and the Special Branch in the city have become more numerous and difficult, which led for re-organisation. The Hyderabad City Police was reorganized in the year 1957 vide G.O.Ms.No.1620 Home (Pol-B) Department date 11-10-1957.Subsequently, the state of Andhra Pradesh bifurcated into two states i.e Telangana and Residual Andhra Pradesh w.e.f 02.06.2014 , Hyderabad City as Common Capital Area for both States.
Accordingly the City was divided into 4 AcsP Division, 12-Circles and 34 Police Stations under the supervision of DCP., Law & Order.
The ACP L&O will deal with both L&O and Crime work. The L&O S.I. will have administrative control over the P.S.and he is incharge of L&O duties. The crime S.I.will be the incharge of Crime work of the P.S.
The other units like Hqtrs. Traffic Special Branch City, headed by the D.Cs.P. will work under the Commissioner of Police.
RE - ORGANISATION OF HYDERABAD CITY IN 1981
Due to rapid increase in population, industrialisation and urbanization etc. there has been a steady increase in crime. vide G.O.Ms.No.341, Home (Pol.D) Department, dated: 30-05-1981.
According to which the city was divided in to 4 zones Viz: Hyderabad South, Hyderabad East, Hyderabad west & Hyderabad North, the 4 zone were again divided in to 12 divisions. Each Zone is under the incharge of D.Cs.P. of the rank of supdt. Of Police for maintenance of L&O, and Crime work and keeping up the morale of the force, who are under the disciplinary and administrative control of the Commissioner of Police, having powers and functions of Addl. Dist. Magistrate.
Each Division is under the incharge of rank of ACP of the rank of Dy. Supdt. Of Police, who works under the control of DCP. He is responsible for prevention and detection of crimes maintenance of L&O and discipline of the force.
Each Police Station is under the incharge of Inspector of Police who is the S.H.O and performs all the duties and exercises all the powers of the S.H.O.
The City Crimes Station was renamed as “Detective Department” which works under the D.C.P. who is assisted by ACPs and Inspectors.
Government also sanctioned in the year 1992, 3 posts Jt. Commissioner of Police in the rank of D.Is.G. to assist the Commissioner of Police for effective functioning and better administration of City Police each in-charged of Co-ordination, Crimes and Security.
One Sub-Inspector of Police was to be placed incharge of Law and Order duties and another for Crime duties for each Police Station. A Divisional Detective inspector for each Division was provided for. In order to achieve this functional division, it was proposed in the scheme to increase the number of posts of Sub-Inspectors and Head Constables and decrease the number of posts of Police Constables.