COVID-19: CAPF companies replace Maharashtra cops in Mumbai, other cities in lockdown duty

The state government had recently requested the Centre to deploy 20 companies of the Central Armed Police Forces.

Published: 16th May 2020 11:04 PM  |   Last Updated: 16th May 2020 11:04 PM   |  A+A-

Workers carry out construction work at India's first open ground quarantine and isolation facility with 1 008 beds for semi-critical coronavirus patients at BKC in Mumbai Saturday May 16 2020. (Photo | PTI)


MUMBAI: CAPF companies have been deployed in Mumbai, Pune, Malegaon, Amravati and some other places to ensure state police get respite from coronavirus-related duties, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said on Saturday.

The state government had recently requested the Centre to deploy 20 companies of the Central Armed Police Forces.

"Some of their companies have come to Maharashtra. Their personnel have been deployed in Mumbai, Pune, Malegaon, Amravati and other places to ensure Maharashtra police gets rest," Deshmukh told reporters.

To a question, Deshmukh said 800 persons have been arrested in connection with attacks on policemen during the lockdown.

Earlier on Saturday, the Union Home Ministry ordered the withdrawal of 10 CAPF companies from Jammu and Kashmir and sent nine such units to Maharashtra, which has been the worst affected state by the pandemic.

They said the 10 units comprising over 1,000 personnel are being withdrawn from the Jammu region of the Union Territory.

No units of the paramilitary forces deployed in Kashmir have been touched, the officials said.

Among these ten, three companies belong to the CISF and the Indo-Tibetan Border Police each, while two each are from the CRPF and the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB), as per an order issued by the Union Home Ministry.

These forces work under the ministry's command for rendering a variety of internal security duties and border guarding.

The Home Ministry, meanwhile, also released nine companies -- four from the Rapid Action Force, two from the Central Reserve Police Force and three from the Central Industrial Security Force -- for deployment in Maharashtra.

While five companies for Maharashtra are drawn from the ten units being withdrawn from Jammu, the rest four have been released from the Mumbai-based unit of the RAF, CRPF's specialised counter-riots unit, they said.

The state had sought 20 Central Armed Police Forces companies recently to relieve its police personnel who, it said, were overworked during the coronavirus-enforced lockdown.

Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh had said state police have been working "day in and day out" to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

Many state police personnel have tested positive for coronavirus and need time to rest and recuperate, he had said.

"The festival of Eid is also around the corner and proper law and order has to be ensured. The police should get some rest for that. Hence, we have requested the Centre to deploy 20 companies of the Central Armed Police Force (CAPF), that is 2,000 personnel," the minister had said in a video message on Twitter.

Thirty-two companies of the Central Reserve Police Force's (CRPF) have already been deployed in Maharashtra and are working in tandem with the state police, according to an official statement of the state government.

Each CAPF company has about 100 personnel.


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