Cops or Con Man
Sometime last week, I was bit late to my workplace and hence alighted at Meenambakkam Railway station and decided to take a quick auto to Kathipara Junction. While attempting to cross the road at the GST road junction, I noticed a traffic cop harshly negotiating with the tender cocunut seller for free tender cocunut. This is quite common. Sometime about three months back, I have described a similar incident in T. Nagar. Check it out here.
Well! I could’nt just but control the laughter and crossed the road. No later than I crossed the road, I could see a big thud of sound and the traffic on the arterial road came to a screeching halt. A speeding autorickshaw hit a middle-aged woman. She resembled to be a construction worker and she was hit badly and almost fell unconscious in the middle of the road. The wind shield of the auto had literally flew off in the air, littering the area with glass pieces strewn all around the road. And, as typical to the Chennai agencies, the road had been cut short thanks to rampant digging up by agencies. The speeding auto had landed almost topsy turvy on the piles of rubbish that these agencies have dug on the side of the road.
One more cop (the colleague of the person who was fighting with the tender cocunut wala) was standing near a tea shop. He came rushing. In the melee, the public gathered. The woman was taken to the side of the road and somebody had hired an auto to have her taken up for some medical assistance. The traffic cop was again found haggling around with some dumb questions to the auto driver. His expected behavior was to take the auto to the nearest police station and issue a notice to the driver. The public were discussing that he would take about some hundred rupees and in less than an hour, the driver would walk out majestically and literally scot free.
This is one such incident. The actual thought of writing this post carries another interesting behavior of cops in Chennai. It is said in any place that to travel to lonely places in untime is not secure since there would be waylay robberies. If you travel through places like Vijaya Nagar Taramani Link Road, Tambaram MCC Railway Gate (opposite Hindu Mission Hospital), Tambaram (New) Railway Subway, you can find these as a salient proof. Besides these, the trucks and the vans that help passengers in commuting to main areas by complimenting the bus services are awfully fleeced by the cops too.
I have personally witnessed the cops putting thier hands for mamool and in one instance, I have found my van driver say to the cop “Tambarathilu Koduthen pa”. And after the van travelled a little while, he told to us “How many times can we give these fellows mamool. They stand for every one kilometer. We have to only say something like that and escape. This is worst than the way lay robberies”.
While this is one side of the story, when we brought about incidents about strange people roaming around in our area (Rajakilpakkam) to Selaiyur Police Station, the cops have not taken any measures to beef up security in this area or to redress the resident’s grievances. I think, the Chennai Commissioner who proudly talks and has tall claims about expaning Chennai Police district upto Tambaram and have changed the police station boards to reflect “Greater Chennai” should also focus on the ethics of thier cops.
If they fail to do it, the line of demarcation between cops and con man would eventually disappear. Public would be confused on who is cop and who is thief? Kids play a came called “Police and Thief” (Thirudan Police Vilayattu) where one kid would act like a thief and other as a police. The latter would chase the former and if we catches, he would get one point. The game would repeat by exchanging thier roles between the kids. We are really afraid whether this game is getting into reality. If it happens then I think the greatest efforts the previous government took in abolishing the Kanthu Vatti, Meter Vatti, Katta Panchayathu would go to drain and con man would again reign supreme.
I think it is high time that the Police High command and State Administration cum security infrastructure of the country concenterate on the parasitic stuff that is prevailing in the country and enforce proper law and order for the welfare of the public.