For a State where good policing seldom makes headlines, the ‘Ama Thana’ Police Station model is drawing national attention.
The Tamando Police Station, which was modelled on it and unveiled on Friday, is inspiring others around the country.
The National Police Academy in Hyderabad has already created a similar police station __ call it a dummy __ for training of IPS probationers so that they can visualise a different picture of a police station from beginning of their careers and learn to work in simulated conditions.
Similar models are now coming up in Haryana, Punjab, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh.
A Odisha State Police Housing and Welfare Corporation (OSPHWC) initiative, the Ama Thana model has been hailed nationally.
Sources said the Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD) has constituted a small group of officers for defining the minimum standards for a people-friendly police station.
Odisha Cadre IPS Officer Sudhanshu Sarangi, who was the brain behind the model during his stint as OSPHWC CMD, has been drafted as a member of the group.
Besides the physical infrastructure, the group will also define the minimum standards in terms of staff requirement, procedural changes, financing and communication strategies.
The Ama Thana model is a radical departure from the existing designs which date back to the Raj.
Since the British wanted to shore up economy and had no reason to make police ‘people-friendly’, the police stations were designed in that fashion that created more confusion rather than clearing any.
The location of Tamando Police Station was chosen keeping in view the siting of the Biju Patnaik State Police Academy which trains the police officers of the State.
It will also give a first-hand idea to the trainees about what a model police station appears like and how they should mould their mindset accordingly.
The floor area of existing police stations is 1,800 sq ft on an average, but the Tamando PS is located on a staggering 13,700 sq ft area.
However, the real challenge before the model police station will be staff strength which is very low, often below 10 personnel, in many police stations in the State.
It has to be raised to at least 50 if Ama Thana is to make its presence felt