CHANDIGARH: The way the Police Budget is growing in Punjab it seems the security art of the state has become a mega charge on its exchequer from paltry head of expenditure 1 years ago

The expenditure on police from 1990-91 to 1992.98 (estimated adds up to RS 724.79 crore to b revise it was Rs 202.40 crore i 1990-91 it rose to Rs 259.4 crore in the next year against the original estimate of Rs. 189.1 crore and the 1992-93 budget estimates put the expenditure a Rs 262.95 crore which going b indications may cross Rs 30 rote at the end of the yea.

The total expenditure on police in the tree pre-militancy year of 1978-79 1979-80 and 1980 81 was Rs 75.96 crore and R: 465.25 crore in eight years from 1980-81 10 1987-88. The ex-pedicure relates to operation a force and excludes the Budge for the Home Guard organization and police housing which would Add up to Rs 80 crore and Rs 32 crore respectively in three year up to 1992.93

Official figures show that the lion’s share of the budget is spent on district police setup. This expenditure was Rs 129.67 crore in1990-91Rs170 crore in 1992-93 tentatively but likely to cross Rs 200crore. The Special Police an auxiliary force of the Punjab government created four years ago will cost the state exchequer Rs 50 crore in 1992-93 again Rs 47 crore and Rs 40 crore in the preceding two years respectively. The POL (petrol i and lubricant) component of the district police budget has cost Rs.34 crore in the last two year and is expected to exceed Rs20 corer in the current financial year.

According to official figures the amount spent on the police we fare is less than the secret fund of the force. While Rs 6 crore were available to the police to brass as secret funds in the past two years the amount spent 6 the welfare of the force was less than Rs 2.5 crore. A regular feature of the police budget in that the actual expenditure on the force far exceeds the original estimates. This is ascribed unforeseen factors reflected i the ongoing situation

The state government plans recruit 15000 more policemen this year As a result the strength Of the force would increase to about 70000 men and officer This is bound to increase the Police Budget by about30%. The number of Home Guards and the Special Police officers is about 40000 and they do not form part of the Punjab Police.

The expenditure on the paramilitary forces developed it Punjab is estimated to be much more than that spent on the Punjab Police. According to police sources one PMF man cost twice as much as a policeman the number of paramilitary forces stationed in Punjab at present is about 40000 against their strength of about 80000 at the time of the February elections in the state. The Punjab government is of the view that the expenditure on the Para-military forces deployed in Punjab should be a liability of the Center as the state government is fighting a “proxy war” on behalf of the nation. This view has not been accepted by the Union Government so far and the Finance Ministry is said to be debiting the expenditure to the Punjab government.

Article extracted from this publication >> May 1, 1992