Driving the Delhi police success story: Meet the men training to become top police officer handlers 


Jitender Singh, LLB, would not be practising law. Instead, he graduated on Monday to become a driver for the Delhi Police.

The 30-year-old Jhajjar-native is a member of the Delhi Police Training School's most educated 'driver constable' class yet - the product of a saturated private job market and improved recruitment processes for the government job which could alter the look and feel of the men in khaki.

He joins a number of other highly educated candidates who nevertheless will essentially be drivers, starting next week.

Behind the wheel: LLB graduates Lokesh Kumar and Jitender Singh who passed out from the Delhi Police Training School to become Driver Constables

Behind the wheel: LLB graduates Lokesh Kumar and Jitender Singh who passed out from the Delhi Police Training School to become Driver Constables

'It's not what I planned when I started studying law. Now I hope the degree will have an impact on what I do as a policeman,' Jitender Singh said, after his graduation and ceremonial parade.

Fellow LLB graduate Lokesh Kumar, a product of Rajasthan University, is equally optimistic about how his legal education will affect his eventual police work - even if he is starting off as a driver.

'Once I start here, I can show them what my knowledge is and what I can achieve, especially how well I know the law,' Lokesh, a 27- year-old from Alwar, said.

The entry of highly educated applicants to a post that requires candidates to just complete Class X is a sign of both the job market and also the promise a Delhi Police post continues to hold.

Jitender Kumar, an MA graduate studying for an MSc, who was awarded All Round Best in the Delhi Police's Driver Constable training programme

Jitender Kumar, an MA graduate studying for an MSc, who was awarded All Round Best in the Delhi Police's Driver Constable training programme

Many of these candidates hope to, after many years as a driver constable, apply for better options further up the ladder.

But to begin with, all 217 from this year's crop will be essentially drivers - carting around more senior officers or commanding vehicles such as PCR vans.

Jitender Kumar, an MA who is also doing a correspondence course in MSc (IT), said a combination of his employment situation in the private sector and his family's regard for the service pushed him to take up the driver constable course.

'My father always wanted his sons to be in the police,' Jitender Kumar, the 33-yearold Delhi native who won the 'All Round Best' trophy among the current class, said.

'Even with my degrees, jobs in the private sector don't give you much longterm safety.'

While worries about job security might be driving such applicants to the police, A.S. Cheema, principal of the Delhi Police Training College, believes efforts to make their recruitment processes better have also made the force more meritocratic.

Cheema refers in particular to the 'Transparent Recruitment Process,' a list of 10 criteria set to be implemented to minimise the use of connections or cheating for those attempting to get selected - thus educated candidates with no connections to the police consider applying.

'There aren't any interviews now. The opportunity to meddle is very little. So if someone answers a particular set of questions correctly, they will get in,' Cheema said.

'Given that background, merit has come to the fore.'


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