Kathmandu, February 1
A CCTV footage helped police identify and arrest the murderer of Pema Chheki Sherpa in Dallu, Kathmandu, in January 2014. A bike rider died in a hit-and-run case in Bijulibazaar and police managed to trace the guilty cabbie on the basis of a CCTV footage.
More so, police retrieved gold ornaments worth around Rs 4.2 million which a woman passenger lost in a cab. These are just a few representative cases of how the surveillance cameras are helping the law enforcement officials in combating crimes and conducting evidence-based criminal investigations.
According to Nepal Police, Inspection General of Police Sarbendra Khanal has attached high priority to the use and expansion of modern technologies for maintaining peace and security, crime control and criminal investigation.
Nepal Police has also adopted rapid information system and drone for effective use of surveillance cameras. Communication Directorate of Nepal Police is responsible for installation, repair/maintenance and control of CCTVs.
Deputy Inspector General Rajib Subba, chief of Communication Director, said surveillance cameras were the digital eyes of police. “They are serving as eyes of police as per the principal that their command should go beyond the horizon,” he said.
Currently, police have 50 sets of rapid information system technology which can be installed at any place within 15 minutes for vigilance and monitoring of a certain location. This system helps police analyse the visuals from command centre of Naxal-based headquarters.
DIG Subba said Nepal Police was making a plan to expand this technology to all provinces. Similarly, it has three drone and two drone pilots for security and traffic surveillance in Kathmandu valley.
The use of CCTV by Nepal Police dates back to 2004 with installation of eight surveillance cameras in and around its headquarters. Senior Superintendent of Police Uttam Raj Subedi, Nepal Police spokesperson, said that the valley had 474 CCTVs till this date.
“We have now 2,916 CCTV cameras throughout the country. We are doing a groundwork to establish a CCTV National Grid, given its effectiveness in crime control, prevention and investigation,” he informed. The advanced CCTV cameras have night-vision capabilities. According to SSP Subedi, CCTV camera has been acting as a third eye of law enforcement officers in areas where manual policing is not possible all the time.
Public video surveillance can be employed as a primary tool to monitor movement of the people. It deters criminals from committing crimes and makes the public feel safer. Digital checkpoints have already been placed in all four transit points of the valley with the aim of bolstering surveillance system.
A version of this article appears in print on February 02, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.