It was a hectic day for the Delhi police control room which is the operational ‘command-and-control’ centre of the one-lakh strong force.
As reports trickled in of violent mobs on the streets of northeast Delhi late on Sunday (February 23), the control room suddenly became the centre of activity with officers reporting four calls from panicked residents every minute. The communal clashes in Delhi’s death toll touched 34 on Thursday.
On Sunday night (February 23), a group of pro- and anti-CAA activists clashed. This subsequently escalated to full-fledged violence over the next two days.
The Police Control Room (PCR) received 3,300 distress calls on Monday and at least 7,520 on Tuesday. Most of these calls reported incidents of violence, arson, vandalism, assault and stone-pelting.
According to the Hindustan Times, senior police officers said around 10,820 calls came in over the two days. On an average, this was 225 calls every hour and almost four calls every minute.
Senior Delhi police officers said the phone calls they received on Monday and Tuesday from northeast Delhi was double the number of calls they received from across Delhi on normal days. “We don’t remember the last time this happened,” HT quoted an officer as saying.
The control room ensured that there were enough PCR vehicles on the roads. The control room also commandeered on standby 7,000 personnel and 900 vans and two-wheelers, he said.
However, the residents had a different story to say. Several residents complained that they never received any help and said the damage would have much less if the police intervened in time.
Reacting to this, a police officer said it was not possible to respond to all calls because the police too had to face a lot of hardships to reach incident spots.
The national capital witnessed one of the worst communal riots ever in its history since February 23. The northeast district, which covers areas such as Jafrabad, Maujpur, Babarpur, Chand Bagh, Brijpuri, and Gokalpuri were affected due to violence.