Police patrol vans moving across neighborhoods during the night is pretty common. It gives us the assurance that we have someone watching over us while we get a good night’s rest.
The neighborhood Police force tries it’s best to be vigilant and check every nook and corner of a locality. But, there is always the possibility of skipping a street or house. To address this issue, few I.T engineers from Bengaluru, India, developed Subhabu.
Subhabu is an Android app that helps the Karnataka Police with night beat (territory of patrolling). The electronic beat (e-beat) will make the process more efficient and accountable.
How does the Subhabu app work?
Karnataka Police officers can install the app on their smartphones or use a special tablet device. The app will show them the map of the area their beat covers and names of the officers incharge.
Each house or store will bear a QR Code tag. The QR Code will link to the property owner’s information. The officers will need to scan the QR Codes placed outside each property in their beat area.
Superintendents can view the data real time or even afterwards. The superintendent will also receive information on any delay in the beat time.
The app needs to be connected to the server in the district police station. When connected, it alerts the officer in case they’ve missed a house. Thus ensuring full efficiency.
Benefits of Subhabu App
What makes the system foolproof is the fact that it cannot be tampered with. Since the app tracks GPS of the patrol officer, they cannot collect the QR Code tags and scan them at a different location.
“We will introduce the system in Bidar city first, and then move to other towns and villages in the next phases. It has advantages over the earlier e-beat system.” – Prakash Nikam, Superintendent of Police (SP).
The old e-beat system used steel sensors which were not weather proof. Lack of maintenance and theft made them difficult to work with. The QR Code tags come printed on a waterproof material.
Prakash Nikam adds,
“They (QR Codes) will not go away easily. What is more, after a few beats, there would be no need for the code tag. The app will pick up GPS locations by itself when the constable walks in front of the house, with or without the tag.”
Also, the QR Codes hardly need any maintenance and cost less. The estimated cost of tagging 20,000 houses in the city is under INR 1 lakh (USD 1,500).
Mr. Nikam concludes,
“We already have a fixed list of houses and streets for carrying out the night beats. We can add some more houses when their owners go on vacations, leaving them locked for a few days. We will subscribe to the app and see if it serves our purpose. If it helps us, we will increase its usage.”
What are your views on this initiative? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.