Also Read: Part 1: How the Lockdown was implemented in Bangalore: Shri Bhaskar Rao, IPS
Part 2: Lockdown Challenge: Distributing PASSES to 4M people: Shri Bhaskar Rao, IPS
Part 3: UNTOLD Police stories of the LOCKDOWN: Cooking pasta, organizing washing machines & the ‘no Baton’ Rule!
We opened ‘Corona Control Room’ inside the ‘Police Control Room’ separately.
We received around 1500-2000 calls per day, complaints of fights breaking out within families. Staying inside their own houses began feeling like imprisonment as fights inside the houses between couples, parents, etc began increasing.
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But still, considering all things I really do thank the people of Bangalore for co-operating with us as wholeheartedly as they did. There were high chances of problems rising with Law & Order.
Fortunately, we were able to handle & overcome all the challenges that came our way.
There were No Uber, OLA, Metro, BMTC, KSRTC along with very very limited no. of Ambulances. If people were to use their own vehicles to travel, then they had to go through hundreds of checks.
So what we did was, to convert all our 265 Hoysala vehicles “Ertiga” into Helpline vehicles for the general public. Anybody who had any kind of health-related emergencies could contact the police control room and get the helpline vehicles to take them to the required hospitals for their check-ups.
This service was made available to public for free of cost.
There are a large no. of the elderly population in Bangalore whose children are out of the country. We used to get calls from them, requesting us to provide basic facility like maid etc for their parents here.
We tried to help out the elderly as well, by joining hands with RWS and sending the vegetable vendors/sellers from villages directly to the apartments. It was a very good experiment as the farmers earned their deserving money without any middle-men eating up their commissions.
We personally visited a few elderly people and helped them with any of their needs and requirements as much as possible. Like this, we were able to keep the city alive although extremely restrained.
On a lighter note, we began receiving requests at our office from senior IT executives in high earning positions, pleading to let them help out the police with any kind of work. From paperwork to building apps, they just requested us to get them out of their homes to be able to help society in this trying situation.
We received a lot of volunteers as such to help ease our workload in few areas. Young men & women helped out by serving us food. They all stayed and ate the food along with us right there as well.
The police station kind of ended up like a food donation camp with so many volunteers and police officers having food throughout the day.
Just like this, we were able to work in close quarters with the general public during the lockdown.
An unexpected virtue of the lockdown was that the property crime rate was brought down drastically. Murder for gain attempted murders, house theft, vehicle theft, etc were all reduced during the lockdown.
In the next episode, I will talk about how we dealt with migrants and the events of Tablighi Jamaat, Paadrayanapura.
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