Though there is decrease in the number of crimes in the country, the Royal Bhutan Police is targetting to bring down the crime rate to only 1700 cases in the next two years. With this aim to bring down the crime rate, the Chief of Police Brigadier Kipchu Namgyel sensitized the owners of bars, karaokes, clubs and drayangs.
The Chief of Police said the success in bringing down the crime rate was possible with the help from the public and community. In the year 2009 and 2010, the crime rate had increased and the crime contribution by Thimphu was 65 percent to the national crime rate.
However, by 2015 the crime rate has decreased by 32 percent in all kind of crimes, out of which the highest crime is brawl fighting, followed by robbery, drugs and chorten vandalism.
In the 11 five year plan, the RBP’s target is to bring down the national crime rate to 1700 and so far by 2015 the national crime rate decreased to 2055. This meant a reduction of 321 cases in one year. “We are to reduce it by 355 cases in the next two years but we target to do it in one year’s time,” said the Police Chief.
However, to cut crime and meet there target, he said that, it is also the responsibility of every citizen. He said that the public should report to police if they happen to witness any sort of crime.
In Thimphu alone, there are 9 Discotheques, 13 Drayangs, 627 bars and 26 karaoke’s. He said that though the numbers are high, they cannot reduce the numbers but they should know about the rise of crime from such an environment.
With an increasing number of bars, he said that, people are concerned. In the past Thukpa vendor’s did not have law but now with a law in place, everything is going well.
Similarly, with bars, the Brigadier said that, no matter if it is a bar, karaoke, club or drayang, they should make sure that, the owners are not allowed to serve alcohol to those who are under 18 and to close the bars by 10 pm.
He also said that, timing for bars is from 1 pm until 10 pm and there is a notice stating that people below age of 18 shall be entertained in any kind of entertainment hall.
“Despite that, people see only the money and they don’t seem to care if the person is under 18 or if he or she is drunk. When the patrolling team are on their rounds for checking, they pretend to close the shop and later continue with the business”, he said.
He also said that, the bar owners should take the responsibility of advising the underage children and they must inform their parents for their wrong doings. He said, “If you don’t serve the underage with alcohol they won’t get into crime related issues and he won’t be in the police station”.
In addition, he also said that, out of 100 percent, only 20 percent stick to the rules whereby they close at sharp 10 and opens at 1 pm while remaining 80 percent go against the law trying to escape from police.
“Make sure to check the identity card or the driving license of a person at the entrance and to send them back if they happen to fail in producing it at the place”, he said.
The Chief also talked about those who run a business illegally. “For those who run businesses without license it is good that we get information on illegal businesses through social media and also through our informer and could get hold of them”, he said.
He also highlighted on people selling illegal substances. He said that people tend to act smart and sell the narcotic substances wrapped in paper like Doma. “Don’t conduct such practice because it will lead to blacklisting of your business and you will be charged for misconduct”, he said.
With regard to the timing followed by discotheque and other entertainment joints, he said that they do not close on time. The owner tends to keep the entertainment open for some extra time because they make good money out of it.
“The Police tries to guide them but they fail to corporate and instead there are few owners who try to bribe police indirectly offering a cup of tea, doma or alcohol. Some refuse to take but few take it and this is corruption”, he said. He said they are worried and want to stop them from doing such things.
The brigadier also emphasized on importance of CCTV camera installation. He said that suspects have been caught or arrested with the help of CCTV several times.
He asked every entertainment owner to install CCTV so that it can be easy for all of them to get hold of a suspect if they happen to come up with any issues. He also said, “With the importance of CCTV as a crime prevention measures, there is a plan to install CCTV in 160 Lhakhangs.”
Apart from that, he also said that every house owner would be benefited from any sort of crime if they can at least install CCTV at the entrance of the building. He said that criminals will be more cautious and won’t commit any crime if they happen to see the CCTV being installed in every building.
The Chief also talked about frisking a person before entering any kind of entertainment hall. He shared the necessity of frisking. “People don’t hesitate to murder people using all sorts of weapons. We have seized many from youths and it is mandatory that the owner should make the frisking compulsory”, he added.
In addition, he said, bouncers do not carry a hand held metal detector which can prevent crime. He said the RBP took on the responsibility in training the bouncers free of cost, and giving them the training on how to detect using a metal detector.
They are asked to make their clubs, discotheques or karaoke sound proof to avoid noise pollution in neighborhood. Thromde has a law whereby laborers are not allowed to work from 9 pm if their working area is nearby a residence.
Talking about sexual harassment in any entertainment hall, he said that it is must be reported if a person is being sexually harassed but with evidence. He also said that it is responsible for both the worker and owner to know the rights and wrong about everything happening inside the room.
With concerns over people taking advantage of darkness at night, RBP asked every owner to put a proper lighting system outside their premises.