KERALA POLICE

Kerala PoliceKerala historically known as Keralam, is an Indian State in South India on the Malabar coast. It was formed on 1 November 1956 following the States Reorganisation Act by combining Malayalam-speaking regions. Spread over 38,863 km2 (15,005 sq mi), it is bordered by Karnataka to the north and northeast, Tamil Nadu to the east and south, and the Lakshadweep Sea to the west. With 33,387,677 inhabitants as per the 2011 Census, Kerala is the thirteenth largest state by population and is divided into 14 districts with the capital being Thiruvananthapuram. Malayalam is the most widely spoken language and is also the official language of the state.

Kerala has the lowest positive population growth rate in India, 3.44%; highest Human Development Index (HDI), 0.790 in 2011; the highest literacy rate, 93.91% in the 2011 census; the highest life expectancy, 77 years; and the highest sex ratio, 1,084 women per 1000 men. The production of pepper and natural rubber contributes significantly to the total national output. In the agricultural sector, coconut, tea, coffee, cashew and spices are important.

The state’s coastline extends for 595 kilometers (370 mi), and around 1.1 million people in the state are dependent on the fishery industry which contributes 3% to the state’s income.

POLICE HISTORY

Loknath Behera, IPS, is the Director General of Police and State Police Chief, Kerala.

Kerala Police, in its present form, dates back to 1956 when the state itself was created in the course of re-organization of states following the independence of India in 1947. In the pre-independence era, the region consisted of the princely states of Travancore and Cochin, and the Malabar region that came under the erstwhile province of Madras. Although the princely states did have their traditional forms of policing all along, the semblance of a modern police force was created in the late 19th century under the British rule. Oliver H. Bensley became the first Superintendent of Police for the state of Travancore in 1881.

As the organization grew, Khan Bahadur Sayyid Abdul Karim Suhrawardy became the first Inspector General of Police of Travancore in 1938. The state of Cochin got its first IGP in 1942. The IGP of Malabar was based at Madras. Many of the handwritten records and the weaponry used by the police force over a century ago survive to this date and provide an interesting peep into the past of the organization, the way it functioned and the society it served.