SC, ST, OBC markings on chests of newly-recruited MP police
The police department and administration of Madhya Pradesh was thrown into commotion after photos of newly-recruited police constable with markings of SC, ST and OBC on their chests surfaced on social media. The newly-recruited constables are currently undergoing medical examination. As of now, it isn't clear as to who did it and why it was done. Multiple investigations are underway. Here are the details..
A probe has been ordered by Birendra Kumar Singh, superintendent of police in Madhya Pradesh's Dhar district where the incident happened. He added that the guilty would be "punished". Meanwhile, State Director General of Police (DGP) Rishi Kumar Shukla also took cognizance of the incident but added that it was done as a "precautionary measure" and that there was no bad intention behind the move.
"It was done as a precautionary measure to ensure that there was transparency in the laid down norms for physical measurements of these categories. I have given instructions to the district police to remove the marking...and to ensure there is no recurrence," said SDGP Shukla.
The medical examination of the newly-recruited constables is being conducted by a medical board chaired by Dr. Sushil Kumar Khare, a civil surgeon at the Dhar district hospital. He said that the markings weren't done by the health department. Meanwhile, RC Panika, the chief medical and health officer (CMHO), Dhar, said that the matter was being looked into to determine how it happened.
"I pointed out when I saw 'O' written on the chest of a candidate. I was told by the police personnel that 'O' denoted 'OBC'. I think it was done by the police department to identify the candidates from different sections," said Dr. Khare.
District officials familiar with the medical examinations, on the condition of anonymity, said that the markings (SC, ST, and O for OBC) were done to give these categories the benefit of relaxed requirements under the selection norms. Under the norms, general, OBC, and SC candidates require a height of 168cm, while ST candidates require at least 160cm. There are similar relaxations for chest measurements.
Apparently, none of the marked candidates have lodged a complaint. However, Indresh Gajbhiye, president of the Ambedkar Shodh Sansthan, said the markings were in violation of the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act, and was a criminal offense. Additional chief secretary (Home), KK Singh, said that he was unaware of the situation and would contact the DGP for information.