Citizens in Hyderabad can now file complaints with the police without approaching the police station as authorities have given patrol vehicles the power to receive complaints and issue acknowledgement receipts for the same.
In a statement, Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar said, "You can give complaint in writing with your address and phone number to the patrol car officers of your area for getting a case registered. For registration of FIR, you need not come to the police station. We start a new initiative on this new year."
According to reports, there are presently 122 patrol vehicles in the city, attached to 60 police stations and authorities hope that the latest move would especially help senior citizens or those who find it difficult to travel, besides in emergency situations, where a complaint has to be filed at the earliest.
The patrol cars can be contacted through the Hawk Eye app and the official website of the city police, or by calling the local police station.
The police in Hyderabad had drawn flak last month after a brutal crime took place on the outskirts of the city on November 27, when a veterinarian was gangraped and killed, before her body was taken on a highway and burnt.
The woman's death had triggered massive protests across the country and also highlighted the issue of womenâ€™s safety in public spaces, with many demanding that concrete steps be taken to prevent such an incident from recurring.
Shortly after her death, it was alleged that police officials did not immediately register a missing complaint when the woman's family approached them, citing jurisdictional issues.
Following this, Telangana Director General of Police (DGP) Mahender Reddy issued a direction, asking policemen across the state to register a 'zero FIR' if a complainant approaches them, and then transfer the case to the appropriate police station.
A â€˜Zero FIRâ€™ is a document that can be registered by any police station when a complainant approaches them for a cognisable offence, whether the case is in their jurisdiction or not.