Thiruvananthapuram: The Kerala Police Association (KPA) has demanded the implementation of the eight-hour duty norm to ensure them a stress-free environment in the force.
Its leaders raised this at the meeting convened by the chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan to discuss the increasing number of suicides among police officers.
They expressed their unhappiness over the staff pattern in the police department introduced in 1988.
Mr Vijayan admitted that they had been overburdened with additional duties since.
The association leaders also wanted centralised lockup facilities in all subdivisions given the custodial deaths reported in the state. They also pointed out that there was a need for a change in the behaviour of senior officers towards subordinates.
Mr Vijayan said the increase in suicides had tarnished the image of the police force.
Following this Kerala Police had decided to open counselling centres at all district police headquarters to combat stress among officers.
State police chief Loknath Behara had directed district police chiefs to open the centres on the lines of the one which is already operational at Thiruvananthapuram.
The centres will have an experienced psychologist and a counsellor. The programme will include stress relaxation counselling, progressive muscle relaxation therapy, neuropsychological testing, memory test, IQ test and other morale-boosting sessions.
KPA had recently met Mr Vijayan, who also holds the home portfolio to express their concerns on the rising number of suicide cases.
This year alone, 11 policemen had ended life in the state owing to various problems, including stress and family issues.