Visualisation Tools for Police Leaders

The past few months I’ve been working on using data for better quality of decision making, better ability to supervise and for better utilisation of resources in police. As a result, two technology projects have come about – which are worth replicating in every state in the country and the central armed police force.

1. GIS based decision support project.

The Maharashtra Remote Sensing Applications Center based in Nagpur has georeferenced digital base maps for Maharashtra’s topography. These maps are on the GIS platform, and have added layers of data on top of the base digital layer. All state and national highways, district/city roads, railway lines, water bodies, forests of the state have been mapped on the base map. With help from MRSAC , we could ‘geofence’ police station boundaries on the base map for all the 1117 police stations in the state and thereafter outline the 36 police districts and 10 Commissionerates, thus creating a layer for adding crime and other police data to a map.

This layer pulls the daily crime report(DCR)data as compiled by the state crime records bureau and projects it on the map police station wise/district wise. So a visual DCR showing distribution of serious crime over the past 24 hours is available on mobile devices. Another layer called Crime Tracker has been added. This layer is based on the online FIRs recorded throughout the state in the CCTNS software. A daily web service of tabulated information on FIRs is received from the CCTNS server , and mapped on the GIS software without any further manual data entry, for a visual view of the distribution of crimes taking place-police station wise. One can check on crime across the state or Range/district or Commissionerate wise. One can check on various periods-like Crime on the previous day/week/month or year or any other designated period. Another feature is the visualisation of distribution of groupings of crimes-like crimes against women, property crimes or public order disturbances or body offences or crimes against children or crime in any other specific law or section of law.

This technology tool should enable the chiefs of various police units like districts or Commissionerates or the Railway police in Maharashtra to detect evolving police station based crime hotspots or new trends in the movement of crimes, which in turn should help them think of strategies to arrest those trends and prevent future crimes. Data based information which will now be constantly available to them, should result in more accurate guidance on crime control by the unit chiefs. And the overall better grip on crime control should yield better safety for people.

In the next phase of the project, it is aimed to make available for public, certain map based data on geographical distribution of intensity of crime. This will enable people to check on safer localities to move in for residence/business. It is also on the cards that once we are in a position to pin the exact (latitudinal-longitudinal) location of crime of every FIR on the map, the in-charge of the police stations will also be able to use this software for strategic thinking on crime control and prediction within their own police station area.

2. Business intelligence analytics for monitoring expenditure

With the help of a few young interns in the Maharashtra Chief Minister’s Fellowship program, we have created a business intelligence tool on Microsoft’s PowerBI software for monitoring and comparing expenditures on various budget heads across all units of Maharashtra Police. This tool enables visualisation of fund allocations and expenditures across all Commissionerates or across all districts in a Range, on a single screen. This enables a comparative view across peer units and is expected to lead to the police chiefs paying attention to resource allocation within their units. The software tool also shows the comparative performance of units on certain parameters like expenditure per crime or per police station or per employee.

The core idea here is that budgetary allocation and expenditure should be continuously assessed for the outcomes desired. These outcomes for the police department can be: 1. Clean and properly maintained police stations and offices, 2. Control on crime, 3. Good morale of the police personnel, 4. Peaceful and safe public spaces, 5. Healthy police personnel, etc.

For these outcomes what is needed from finance is the foll: adequate and continuous spending on Wages of contractual labour and office expenses for no 1 above, appropriate per crime expenditure on rewards to police personnel, domestic travel expenses, vehicle fuel, personnel training, prisoners diet expenditure and such other heads of account for nos 2 & 4 above, also spending on community policing programs (if there is a budgetary allocation for the same) for no 4 above, immediate drawal of bills to pay dues of employees like leave compensation or off day compensation or medical reimbursement etc will achieve satisfactory performance on 3 & 5 above.

With about 90-95% of most state police budgets allocated for paying salaries, there is a great need for extracting the last drop of juice from every rupee spent on non salary items. And what better way to do this than to continuously monitor the expenditure from various budgetary grants for the desired outcomes. Technology helps to do this seamlessly.

Both these tools are available to the Superintendents of Police and Commissioners of Police in Maharashtra and their supervisory officers on the Maharashtra Police website.

Advertisements

6 thoughts on “Visualisation Tools for Police Leaders

  1. Dear Pradnya,

    This is indeed path-breaking. It should also help us to understand how much is required and how much we are spending on the working of a typical police station. If the financial outlay is inadequate as has been the case earlier, we should then proceed to persuade the government on the provision of adequate finances in the running of a police station – the first respondent of any crisis; the basic grievance redressal mechanism at the grass root level.

    To help the poor and the disinherited should make a political sense to any government in power.

    Deeply commended on this excellent initiative. May your tribe prosper.

    Fond regards,

    SS Puri

    ________________________________

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for your comment Sir. The crime data is automatically recieved through web service from CCTNS daily and the expenditure data is on a periodic auto update with data from the state’s online budgetary dispersal system.

      Like

  2. This is really amazing. It’s like a very careful housewife whose husband’s income is not impressive but still she keeps a tight control over finances to ensure that money is put where the mouth is. When home department gets less than 2% of budgetary allocation, this may be of immense help. Knowledge of safe areas to reside or to set up businesses is in sync with “ease of doing business” mantra. This deserves to be publicised through a press conference either by CM or DG.

    Like

    1. Thank you for your comment. But since these tools are currently meant only for police leaders to use and strategise better, the general publicity that you mention is maybe not required. The usage however needs to maximise within Maharashtra Police and be adopted by other state police depts. That will improve supervision and also outcomes for the public.

      Like

  3. Reps Madam,
    Its a thought inspiring idea. We in Assam Police are also contemplating a GeoInt unit. We plan to work on real time satellite imagery and add Land records layers, critical incident sites, ambush points etc for better planning of CI ops. Maharashtra Police’s GIS solution for crime mapping can act as a template for us. Curious to appreciate the project in person shortly.
    Regards,
    Dhananjay Ghanwat
    2010/ Assam

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s