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Police – Definition, History, Organization, Facts and Ranks

Police – Definition, History, Organization, Facts and Ranks

Police in India comes under the state subject of law and order. State governments are free to define and notify the nomenclature of police ranks and powers in their state. They do so through gazetted notification. Since police is a state subject, the respective state government defines police ranks in their respective legislations and bye-laws. The Central Government of India controls the police ranks in the Union Territories (UT’s) through the Lieutenant Governors of the Union Territories.

India practices Federal Democracy i.e. a system that divides its powers between the Central and State Governments. The 7th line of the Constitution states that “Law and Order” is a state subject. Therefore, all the State Police Departments report to their respective governments, of which 9 are under the Central Government along with the Union Territory of Delhi.

The Indian Police rank in the states comes under the General Administration Department, which reports to the Chief Minister of the State through the District Magistrates. The police force in every state is empowered with the responsibility of maintaining law and order and providing safety and security to the citizens. Police ranks are divided into Direct Entry Posts and Promotional Posts. Direct recruitment is done in the police ranks up to a certain level but posting after a certain level is done only through promotion. The Indian Police ranks second highest worldwide in terms of the number of personnel in the forces (combined for all states).

What is Police?

Full Form of Police : Public Officer for Legal Investigations and Criminal Emergencies, which means Public Officer for Legal Investigation and Criminal Emergencies. That is, the police are those officers, who keep their area free from violence, redress the complaints received from the public. The main function of the police is to maintain law and order, public order and prevent crime and disorder etc.

Primarily the police is a department of government concerned with the maintenance of public order, safety and health and enforcement of laws and with executive, judicial and legislative powers.

History of Police

The Indian Councils Act of 1861 by the British created a professional police bureaucracy in India. Later it was renamed and established Indian Imperial Police.

The Inspector General was then the head of the Provincial Police Administration. The provinces divided into districts were headed by the Superintendent of Police. At that time the recruitment was done on the basis of nomination. This was done in two ways – either the officers of the British Army were appointed or the younger sons of the zamindars were appointed in the United Kingdom.

In 1893 the enrollment system of recruitment of officers was abandoned. A Combined Competitive Examination was introduced for the recruitment of officers in the Indian Police. This exam was held in London. The first such examination was held in June 1893 and the top ten candidates in the merit list were appointed as probationaries in the Indian Imperial Police.

In 1902 – 03, a Police Commission was established under Sir Andrew Fraser and Lord Curzon. The commission recommended the appointment of Indians at the level of officers (this was not allowed earlier). However, Indians could only reach the rank of Inspector of Police and were not considered part of the Indian Imperial Police.

From 1920 onwards, Indians were allowed to be part of the Indian Royal Police and competitive exams for this were held in London and India.

From 1907, officers of this force were instructed to wear the letter “I.P” on their epaulettes to distinguish them from officers who were not recruited for competitive examination by the Secretary of State.

In 1917, the Indian Police Service label was mentioned for the first time in a report of the Islington Commission.

In 1932 its name was changed to Indian Police.

In 1948, in an independent India, the Imperial Police was formally replaced by the Indian Police Service (IPS).

Indian Police Rank List

Indian Police Service Gazetted Officers Rank

  1. Director General of Police – DGP
  2. Additional Director General of Police – ADGP
  3. Inspector General Of Police/ Special Inspector General Of Police – IGP/SIGP
  4. Deputy Inspector General Of Police – DIG/DIGP
  5. Assistant Inspector General/Senior Superintendent of Police – AIG/SSP
  6. Superintendent of Police /Deputy Commissioner of Police – SP/DCP
  7. Additional Superintendent of Police – ASP
  8. Deputy Superintendent of Police – DSP
  9. Assistant Superintendent of Police – ASP (Probationary Rank: 2 Year of Service)
  10. Assistant Superintendent of Police – ASP (Probationary Rank: 1 Year of Service)

Commissioner of Police is a post held by officers of different ranks at different places. For example, it is conducted by DG rank officers only in Delhi and Mumbai.

In short, by DG rank officers in Pune, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Varanasi, Guwahati etc. and IG rank officers in Gurgaon, Ludhiana, Mysore etc. and Trivandrum, Conducted by the DIG rank officers in Kochi etc.

Indian Police Non-Gazetted Officer Rank

  • Police Inspector
  • Assistant Police Inspector
  • Sub Inspector – SI
  • Assistant Sub-Inspector – ASI
  • Head Constable – HC
  • Police Naik – SC
  • Constable – PC

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