Mumbai: A day after Maharashtra Government’s request, four companies of the Rapid Action Force have arrived in the state to assist the stressed-out police in grappling with the COVID 19 crisis and maintaining law and order ahead of Eid.
During the video conference with PM Modi on Monday, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had pleaded for deployment of central forces in the state to lighten the burden of the police and give them much needed rest.
Home Minister Anil Deshmukh told FPJ, The government on Tuesday requested the Centre for 20 companies of Central Armed Police Forces comprising 2,000 personnel to rest the fatigued police force, who have been out on the streets since March 22, three days before the nationwide COVID-19 lockdown began. Now, we also have festivals like Eid coming up.
We have to make arrangements for maintaining law and order. The police need to get some rest. He informed that on Wednesday four companies comprising 400 personnel of the RAF have already reached the state. The Centre will send the rest in phases.
Deshmukh said the CARF personnel always move in groups of 60 to 70 personnel; so, they cannot be deployed separately like the police. As and when it is needed, they will be deployed in various parts of Mumbai, including Dharavi and rest of Maharashtra he noted.
CARF comprises Central Reserve Police Force, Border Security Force, Rapid Action Force, CISF, Indo Tibetan Border Police and the Sashastra Seema Bal. Deshmukh said about 1,000 police personnel among the 2.2 lakh strong state police force have already tested positive. “Many personnel have tested positive and need time to rest and recuperate.
Eid is on May 25, when an augmented security presence will be required,” Deshmukh said, adding, his department has allocated low-risk work to 23,000 police personnel above 50 years of age, while 12,000, who are above 55, have been asked to stay home as a precautionary measure. He informed that the department has made adequate arrangements for treatment of police personnel across the state.