Policing for Social Change Tracing the Historical Evolution of Policing and the Role of Police in Society

  • Dr. Sunil John and Vaishali Gurav
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  • Dr. Sunil John

    Associate Professor & Research Supervisor at School of Law, Christ (Deemed to be University), Lavasa Campus, Pune, India

  • Vaishali Gurav

    School of Law, Christ (Deemed to be University), Lavasa Campus, Pune, India

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Law as an instrument of change must constantly evolve and cater to the changing social, cultural and political ideologies of the society. Policing as the enforcement agency of law, too needs to change at the same pace as that of the society. Since ancient times, modern policing has evolved and police today are looked upon as mediators in settlement of disputes and are responsible for the moral stability of the society. Sir Robert Peel’s modern democratic principles of the Metropolitan Policing System introduced in the year 1829 are being followed throughout the world. However, India was never regulated by these principles during the colonial rule. The Irish colonial model of armed policing was used by the British to assert their supremacy and hold over India. It was nowhere close to the democratic model of policing of Sir Robert Peel and it violated the principle of rule of law. This colonial policing culture is still deep-rooted in Indian policing and has failed to emerge from the repressive colonial rule. The most important facet of modern policing is public trust and faith. Policing is no longer just about maintenance of law and order, but has evolved to moral guardianship and protection of human rights. Policing in India needs to reform from the colonial rule and adapt itself to improve the quality of policing. Research has proven that women in police improve the quality of policing and help reporting of sexual assaults and domestic violence as victims feel comfortable reporting to female police. This paper is a study of the historical evolution of policing and an attempt to understand the role of police in meeting the expectations of the society.


Research Paper


International Journal of Law Management and Humanities, Volume 4, Issue 4, Page 200 - 215

DOI: https://doij.org/10.10000/IJLMH.111288

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