“Call the police”, is mostly the first thing that comes to one’s mind when something untoward or unfortunate occurs. The police are the watchdogs of the nation’s law and order and are responsible for maintaining peace & harmony in any society. It is thus obvious that it takes tons of hard work, perseverance and dedication to be a part of the prestigious Indian Police Service (IPS). On 26th February 2010, the 2nd year Public Administration students of St. Francis College got an opportunity to have a glimpse of what these brave individuals undergo in order to wear that coveted khaki uniform as the college had organized a field trip to the reputed Sardar Vallabhai Patel National Police Academy (SVPNPA). A. Shiva Tejaswini, one of the students said, “The trip was very good. It was especially helpful for those, who don’t have a clear picture for their career. People are usually under the misconception that all police officers are corrupt, but my mind has changed after seeing the rigorous training that they undergo. We had a lot of fun on the trip, but it was more of a learning experience.”
The day began with a seminar by Mrs. Anita Punj, IPS, who is the Deputy Director of the Academy, Research & Coordination. She briefed the students about the following points
- The history of the Academy
- Its development over the years
- Its various traditions like formal dinners, passing out parade, shramdan etc.
- The facilities available on campus
- The organizational structure of the Academy
- Its activities
- The basic course of the trainees, their co-curricular activities and
- Annual events
The students were intrigued by the various aspects of the course of training in the Academy. Nivedita Chakravarti, a student said, “The trip was a good wake-up call for people aspiring to get into the private sector to join the Civil Services and serve the country. It is very easy to sit back and criticize the police. After seeing the tough training that they go through, I have new-found respect for the police. It has given my aspirations a new dimension. My favourite part of the trip was the presentation by Mrs. Anita Punj, which was very informative. Even the demonstration in the Fire Arms Training Simulator (FATS) was interesting.”
The FATS i.e. Fire Arms Training Simulator is a recent development in the Academy that allows trainees to practice shooting without the wastage of bullets and cartridges. In this system, the guns are real but the cartridges aren’t. It uses a laser which shoots the virtual target on a large screen in the front. One of the trainers and 2 trainees demonstrated its working to the students and many students even volunteered to try their hand at shooting. Karthika Anagha, another student said, “The FATS demo was the best part. The entire trip was very informative. The Academy is named after the Iron Man of India, Sardar Vallabhai Patel. It inspired me to take up a career in IPS. I also liked the library, which had many books on police subjects as well as general knowledge and fiction. The gym was well equipped and it inspired me to stay fit!” Mona Agarwal, one of the students said, “The trip was very nice. I didn’t expect government facilities and infrastructure to be so well updated with the latest technology. The academy focuses on churning out mentally, physically and morally efficient police officers, which is great for our nation. The way Mrs. Anita Punj made a mark in this field inspired me to do something similar. The shooting in FATS room was amazing. I also liked the Forensic Dept. where various crime scenes had been simulated for training purposes.”
The students were also shown the Forensic Department, where 3 crime scenes had been created using mannequins. A trainer explained to them how little details in the crime scene speak volumes about the crime and the importance and procedure of collecting evidence properly. Pramoda Ayapilla, a student said, “I felt the crime scene simulators were the best part of the trip.” She further added, “I realized after going there that I actually had no idea about the Civil Services. My interest has grown now. The entire Academy is so well maintained. I’m really inspired to write the UPSC exam now.” Sushma Nanduri, another student said, “I loved the firing demo in FATS and the crime scene simulators. Now that I know how IPS officers get trained, I really want to pursue a career in this field. After seeing Mrs. Anita Punj, I want to see myself in that position someday.”
However, not every student was inspired to join IPS after the trip. Poonam Jain, a student said, “The trip was refreshing & it made me feel proud. But, I don’t want to join the police force because I really love Psychology, my other subject and want to build a career in that field.” Shabnam Malani, another student said, “It was really good to see that such good training is being imparted to future police officers. However, I’m not really inspired to join IPS.”
Finally, the students were taken to the guest house, which had a beautiful view of Mir Alam Tank. “The view from the guest house was really beautiful!” said A. Shiva Tejaswini.
It can be concluded that the trip was a success and it inspired many students to give a serious thought to a career in IPS. The demo in FATS and the crime scene simulators emerged clear winners when it came to the best part of the trip according to students. The rigorous training that the police officers undergo and the complexity of their jobs makes it evident that a career in the IPS is highly taxing & demanding. Hats off to the Police officers of our nation!
The SVPNPA is located at Shivrampalli, Hyderabad. It trains IPS officers who have been selected through the All India Based Civil Services Examination. The duration of the course is a little over 2 years.Earlier in 1948, it was called the Central Police Training College & was situated in Mount Abu, Rajasthan. In 1967, it was renamed as National Police Academy. In 1974, it was re-christened as Sardar Vallabhai Patel national Police Academy, named after the Iron Man of India, Sardar Vallabhai Patel and in 1975, it was shifted from Mount Abu to its present location.
For more information about SVPNPA, visit the Academy’s official website www.svpnpa.gov.in