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Uttarakhand Police Ban Personnel From Venting on Social Media

(Image for representational purpose only. Reuters photo)

Dehradun: After a BSF jawan’s video complaining about quality of food went viral, Uttarakhand Police on Friday banned its personnel from raising any service related grievance on social media.

It warned of punitive measures if any content posted by them “tarnishes” the image of the force or policies of state and cental governments.

DGP M A Ganpati issued a circular to senior police officials of the state asking them to ensure that social media tools including Facebook, Whatsapp, Twitter and Youtube are used by their subordinate employees only for professional purposes.

The circular whose copy was made available to the press here asks senior police officials to ensure that social media platforms and mobile apps are used only for professional work such as exchange of information and augmentation of the efficiency of the force.

Complaints related to services can be presented before the Superintendents of Police or Commandants of Battalions, range IGs and DIGs concerned every Monday or before the DGP every Friday.

Banning total use of the social media platforms for uploading content “which could tarnish the image of the state or central government’s policies as well as the force”, it said police personnel found guilty of such activity will be punished.

Those found guilty of using social media for inciting fellow employees against the force under the Police (Incitement to Disaffection) Act, 1922.

The circular asks heads of district police and battalion commandants to nominate DSP rank officials as Welare Officers who will listen to complaints of jawans related to service matters regularly besides monitoring cleanliness of police station or battalion premises and maintenance of hygiene in the mess being run by them.

In special circumstances, any employee can share his problems with the SPs or Commandants concerned through SMSes or Whatsapp messages, it said.

A video by BSF jawan Tej Bahadur Yadav complaining about the quality of food had gone viral, triggered a flurry of reactions with the PMO also seeking a detailed factual report on the incident from the Union Home Ministry.