Marked a Letter to the Prime Minister of India
Central Association of Private Security Industry (CAPSI) has recently written a letter to the Prime Minister of India and requisitioned for the formation of Directorate of Private Security Services for better controlling and governance of the industry. The Association, through the letter, submitted that the private security industry is controlled and regulated by the hurriedly enacted Private Security Agencies Regulation Act (PSARA) 2007 which leaves many areas of governance unaddressed. The Act delegates the governance authority of the industry in a state to the Controlling Officer who is normally an IGP or ADGP (L&O) of that particular state. These officials are immensely pre-occupied with local law & order obligations and therefore hardly avail adequate time to address the issues of the private security agencies. Besides, there is no separate or additional staff sanctioned and/ or budgetary allocation made for the cause. Thus the Controlling Authorities consume excessively long time to complete licensing and renewal of license processes. There is hardly any dialogue and positive interaction between the Authorities and the security entrepreneurs, and that is seriously impacting the existence and growth of the industry.
CAPSI added that despite various efforts made by the police department and the Association, only nearly 30% agencies could be brought into the license regime so far; 70% of them are yet operating without any legislative controls which results in rampant violations of laws and provisions enshrined therein. The license seekers are virtually put under prolonged, tiring procedures that let their energy and wisdom slide to the negative state; and this is harmful for the industry.
Though the private security enterprises, the Association further pointed out, are engaged in community services, they are put under the Home department just because the word ‘security’ is tagged to them, which is unjust. The industry works under the purview of about 10 legislations – 9 of them are related to the labour department, and the nature of the business correlates to the MSME. Under such circumstances, a separate Directorate for PSI would be more advisable than assigning police departments with these additional charges. The total strength of PSI is much more than the combined strength of Army, Navy, Airforce and Police. It is just not feasible for an already burdened sensitive department of state law & order to govern this huge industry, in addition.
The Private Security Sector has gone through significant changes in its usability and operational management. The socio economic environment has enhanced its annual growth to 22% making this industry as the largest job generator, and the largest contributor to the national exchequer. The industry is presently a workforce of nearly 8 million personnel on duty all over the country who are assisting in creating safe and secure environment for people and corporate to live, work and prosper. Most of these private security agencies are being run by the first generation entrepreneurs who have invested their skills and small savings to bring security assurance at the door steps of citizens – with rarely any institutional or financial assistance from outside.
Our demand for the formation of Directorate of Private Security Services is genuine. The industry which is one of the largest employment generators and leading revenue contributors of the country has been narrowly recognized and attended. The over-burdened controlling authorities are not able to adequately deliver on the front of PSI issues. A separate entity to control and regulate the affairs of private security agencies is must and inevitable. Establishment of a distinct Directorate of Private Security Services under MHA or MSME will prove a game changer for the industry. It will bring efficiency and effective implementation of PSARA. A workforce of 8 million security personnel, and 22 thousand guarding companies surely need well-structured governance system under the concept of ‘Ease of Doing Business,’ as promoted by the Hon’ble Prime Minister, Narendra Modi.”
Kunwar Vikram Singh
CAPSI, on behalf of the private security agencies, demands that the governance responsibility and methodology laid down in the present PSARA 2007 need to be reviewed so that the industry could grow and deliver efficiently. It is prudent that they are reviewed by a committee of security consultants and social management experts. There is a dire need to make course correction to ensure that the PSI is given due recognition, priority and governmental patronage. CAPSI suggests that a Directorate of Private Security Services is established under the Ministry of Home Affairs or MSME so that due attention is accorded to this essential service by professionals and bureaucrats.