RTI Activist » Blog Archive » RTI Activist Shri Pramodanand Exposed A Bribe Taking Traffic Cop With Video Evidence !! But He Is Let Off By The Dept For Lack of Evidence !!!
Home » Featured, RTI Activist

RTI Activist Shri Pramodanand Exposed A Bribe Taking Traffic Cop With Video Evidence !! But He Is Let Off By The Dept For Lack of Evidence !!!

6 August 2011 No Comment

(Mumbai Report) Exposing a bribe-taking traffic havaldar in action with a hidden camera is what many of us dream of, but never actually do. Mumbai RTI Activist Shri Pramodanand (shri.pramodanand@gmail.com) did this… and he used the footage to lodge a complaint. Then he followed up with an RTI application asking what action was taken.

Read the letter from Jt. Commissioner’s office, and reply to RTI application: http://tinyurl.com/Action-taken-bribe-taker-cop

On 7th February 2009, Pramodanand videotaped a traffic constable near Mumbai’s Dreamland Cinema, Grant Road. The cop had stopped a scooterist for violating a ‘No Entry’ sign.

THE VIDEO TELLS THIS STORY:

(i)                 The cop is holding the scooterist’s driving license.

(ii)               The scooterist pays some cash.

(iii)             The cop quietly returns the license, glancing around.

(iv)              He pockets the money, closes his fine-book without making any entry, and walks away.

Pramodanand found out that the cop’s name was Prashant Pawar and his identification no. was 960695. He also learned that the scooterist’s vehicle no. was MH-AB-9398. His complaint on 9th February 2009 to the Traffic Department had all these details, and also video footage.

The Deputy Commissioner, in his letter dated 4th January 2010, recommended a preliminary enquiry and departmental action. Pramodanand points out, “Asst. Commissioner Ashok Takalkar made an enqiry. His report to Dy Commissioner S S Solunke says that in this video, the behavior of the constable is suspicious. He notes that the constable, accompanied by his mother and brother, came to my house to beg forgiveness, and this further supports my complaint. It also says that the cop was transferred to Light Arms division, Worli, for the enquiry.”

However, 14 months later, Pramodanand’s learned through Right to Information that CONSTABLE PRASHANT PAWAR WAS ACQUITTED (‘DOSHMUKT’ IN MARATHI) DUE TO “LACK OF EVIDENCE”. The evasive RTI reply suggests that the bribe-giving scooterist was not called.

Pramodanand himself was called to depose as a government witness. “They did not ask me a single question about the incident itself, but they asked 50 questions trying to establish that my credentials or my motives were not proper,” he remarks.

It is surprising how, despite such a revealing video, the cop was let off on grounds of insufficient evidence. Nevertheless, Pramodanand’s courageous action sends a message to the police department: Beware! Citizens are watching you!

For all of us, the take-away message is:

1)      Be an alert citizen, and use your mobile camera as an anti-corruption tool.

2)      Promptly lodge a detailed complaint.

3)      Follow up with RTI applications.

4)      Be persistent.

5)      Expect results… but not 100% results.

6)      Sometimes, to hold the system accountable, we need to go after individuals.

Comments are closed.