LUCKNOW: Thousands of police personnel staying in dilapidated barracks in Police Lines would soon get new hostel buildings equipped with all modern facilities as 470 projects, totalling Rs 2,789 crores, to strengthen the housing infrastructure for the men in uniform are underway in the state.

Urgency for the work can be gauged from the fact that additional chief secretary, home, Awanish Awasthi issued 169 government orders (GOs) in one go recently and informed chief minister Yogi Adityanath the same day that the home department had cleared all the projects. In 2017-18, Rs 85 crore was earmarked for the construction of police buildings.

“It is not so that we are giving them only a decent housing facility. The government has also decided to construct and renovate fire stations and police stations to offer a better office space to the force,” the ACS said, adding that “what is the most noticeable is that the CM is personally monitoring the work progress.” The housing problem of the police force was not hidden from the CM as he had toured the state extensively and he knew exactly where the work was to be done, he said.

Claiming that construction activities would be carried out in almost all the UP districts, Awasthi said that out of total 417 projects, 361 works are of up to Rs 5 crore, 96 of up to Rs 20 crore and 14 works up to Rs 50 crore.

For the first time 44 hostels each are being constructed for male and women police personnel, Awasthi said and added at 322 police stations special rooms would be constructed for investigating officers. Hostels and barracks would also be constructed at police stations to offer better housing facilities to police personnel of lower ranks, he added.

Meanwhile, talking to TOI, former UP director general of police Brij Lal said, “Since ages police jawans and their families have been living in barracks which were constructed during the British period. Many generations have spent their entire lives in these dilapidated buildings. Now, for the first time a chief minister has looked into their problems. Yogi Adityanath is doing a great job for the force by offering them a decent living accommodation.”

Claiming that the CM’s decision would also help in distressing the police, Brij Lal said that the housing facility for the three-lakh strong force has always been a concern for the state and a tormenting issue for police personnel who have to live in miserable conditions in the outdated structures for decades to the extent that it almost caused revolt in the past and a good number of them ended their lives in frustration.

The former DGP recalled that “during his tenure he had come across several incidents where constables were slapped cases by their in-laws for not keeping their wives and children with them.” Due to poor housing facilities most of constables avoided calling their spouses from villages, he said adding that the CM’s decision to improve the residential facility would definitely result in better police functioning in the state.

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