DTU Times interviewed IPS Officer (Retd.) AP Durai, former Director General, Karnataka Police, who was at DTU in Yuvaan Literature and Film Festival (YLFF '19).
You discovered that bringing about law and order within oneself was a prerequisite for one’s role as a police officer. How can this be applied to any other occupation?
Bringing law and order within oneself is much more difficult than in the outside world. In the exterior world, we may use external forces and people obey out of fear, and follow orders to keep discipline. But to change from within, we need to take steps ourselves, without any external instructions given by any outside authorities. We need to regulate our thought process, especially our mind, which influences all our actions. Order is the regulation of thought and law. This is referred to as the law of karma or sanskaras. These are based on actions and reactions- evil thoughts, jealousy and ambition creates ripples in our consciousness which leads to regrettable actions. We repeatedly tend to create impressions based on our flawed thought processes and get into a vicious cycle where our thoughts lead to unfortunate actions. Law of karma teaches us to strengthen our thoughts and get rid of our ego. It defines a spiritual process to stop creating foul impressions and exhausting all previous biased impressions. Our minds are slaves to our thoughts and we need to transmit the spiritual essence into our hearts and clear up past opinions to free the present memory. The easiest way to achieve this is to meditate and say a simple prayer. These conditions help you toughen your mind and brings it under regulation. This is different than controlling your mind; it is merely directing it towards the divine presence in each of our hearts. Slowly implementing this process leads to acceptance of life as it unravels before you, it teaches you the art of accepting your destiny and waiting for events to unfold, rather than engineering things to happen in life.
In the book you've cited that the computerisation of payrolls was a success by the Police Computer Wing, but still that of crime and crime data weren’t. You developed a software and got it installed in the districts, but due to the lack of funds you had to trade-off with lower technology. How do you think these financial impediments are keeping India on the backfoot?
Policing, prevention of crime and maintenance of law and order cannot suffer due to lack of certain facilities. In the police department, everything needed to be handwritten and managed in files and registers. We need to comprehend that administration and all officers can excel with or without technology. The gap between the latest technologies and common people always exists. The major impediment is not the technology available but the philosophy of the department. They should have the fact ingrained that they are in service of the public and not themselves. They need to operate without any fear or prejudice. These poisons of ambition and pride that corrupt the department need to be extinguished by the liberation of the spirit and overcoming of one’s internal struggles.
You've also served as Director of NPA. What changes have you seen in the training and attitude of regular recruits at your time and off late?
The methodology and technology have seen upgradation and facilities are constantly being improved. NPA is no longer the small school we had in Mount Abu, but is now a modern institution. The facility does not lag behind in technology, however, the value system injected in the young police officers is not satisfactory. We see news about numerous IPS officers and officers at several other ranks pursuing wrong motives, often surrounded by scandals or committing suicide due to unfortunate circumstances. This points out that something crucial is missing in their training. The law of karma and sanskaras that I have mentioned in my book is inescapable. Everyone needs to accept the fact and it needs to be present in the consciousness of every police officer. They need to be trained to listen to their hearts, as on different occasions the mind complicates things since it is often filled with pride, jealousy and desires. All of us have been given free will and we need to exercise it and connect with our inner self through meditation.
What message would you like to give to the students?
The coming generation is the promise of future, integrity, idealism and honesty. All of us are dependent on them. The future generation must develop strong ideals and principles to guide them throughout their lives. They should be strong enough to uphold these values in times of fear. They need to grasp the fact that self-confidence is the key to internal power, and one always needs to protect the light within oneself to stay true to one's heart and morals.