Pune: The State government has approved Rs 72.60 crore for installation of CCTV cameras at 1,100 police stations across Maharashtra. The approval came following directions from the Mumbai High Court after custodial deaths in Mumbai.
According to officials, of the 1,100 police stations, 500 will get CCTV cameras under Central government’s smart police station initiative.
Earlier, CCTV cameras were installed in 25 police stations of Mumbai Police Commissionerate on a pilot basis last year. This was after the High Court directed the State government in August 2014 and February 2016 to install CCTV cameras in police stations to avoid custodial deaths.
As per the government resolution issued on Monday, the rotating CCTV cameras will now be installed covering entry and exit gate, police station entry (diary room), passage, station house officer’s room, charge room and lock-up.
The number of cameras may vary from 7 to 15 per police station as per the area covered. The type of the cameras will be varifocal indoor dome cameras for indoor surveillance, varifocal outdoor bullet camera for outdoor environment, pan tilt zoom camera near the main entry and exit. The cameras will have inbuilt infrared illuminator so that even in low light they can capture the images.
A viewing centre will be set up in the room of police station in-charge with 32 inches LED television connected with Network Video Recorder (NVR). Camera covering lockup area will have 365 days recording storage capacity while other cameras will have 90 days storage capacity. However, the Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) will be installed with just an hour's back-up capacity.
To protect the video against tampering, protection layer will be added on recorded and exported videos.
Under Pune city police commissionerate, there are several police stations where CCTV cameras have been installed.
“Except ladies room and detection branch (DB) room, all rooms of the police station have CCTV cameras," an officer told Sakal Times.
A criminal lawyer, not wishing to be named, added, “Its the DB room where all interrogation and torture happens, but cops have conveniently avoided installing cameras there.”