Hyderabad: He looks like film star Arjun and is used to the comparison but 2013 batch IPS officer Vishunu Warrier always liked the services, either the Army or the police. He did his integrated masters in economics from IIT-Madras, appeared for his civils, joined the police service and did his mandatory programme with the Greyhounds as assault commander.
“My first posting as ASP was in Godavarikhani, which was part of erstwhile Karimnagar district. This was a microcosm of the entire state. On the fringes it had components of extremism, considering it borders Gadchiroli. In the town, we had coal-related labour issues and then there was the general law and order. There was even factionalism in certain pockets like Manthani,” he says.
After district reorganisationm he was posted as SP of Nirmal district which was newly created. “I had to start from scratch. This too was a learning experience. Nirmal had communal issues, and it had inter-border issues with Maharashtra like organised crime or property offences,” he says.
Then came the tribal agitation between the Adivasis and the Lambadas. He along with the collector Divya Devarajan were posted together to the Adilabad sensitive district.
“When we joined our duties, there was a serious lack of credibility about the establishment. It was not anybody’s fault but matters got out of hand and the cumulative effect was the unrest between the two communities,” he says.
“There were 41 cases of rioting on a single day and we were counselling them to take the legally permitted route. We helped them wherever we could. This was an issue-based agitation,” he says. “We were talking to both the sides. This issue can be settled only by legislation.”
He smilingly says that this was where the revenue and the police worked in tandem. “Some tribals have started coming into the mainstream and have tasted the benefits of the welfare policy of the state government, which is very effective. Their issues are being redressed,” he says.
The police has also found another way of communicating with the denizens of the state. “We have the kalabrandams and we go to villages and through folk songs, dances and skits we deal with various issues. It is a three-hour programme and we do it once in three days. We gather some 500 people and discuss social issues in a humorous way which is understood by them.”
The police discusses farmer suicides, helplines, and other issues like spurious seeds, hooch tragedies, illicit and cheap liquor, gambling. New generation issues like ATM frauds, job and visa fraud are also discussed,” he adds.
Though from Kerala, he has learnt both Telugu and Gondi languages and says “We can bring about a change.”...