In Focus

South Mumbai Slums Look Back At Police Action During Lockdown With Gratitude

It's finally here...the wait is over! Unsung Mumbai Police - Colaba Division produced by DraftCraft Films in collaboration with The Draft has been released in public domain and is available for free viewing. 

This documentary was created as part of #TheUnsungProject kickstarted by Unsung - The Film that was released in November 2020. It captures the selfless dedication of those whose contributions would otherwise go ... unsung.

Mumbai's population is estimated to be 20.82 million (2.08 crores) in 2022 as per the Mumbai Metropolitan Region estimates of UN World Urban Agglomeration Population Prospects. Compare that to New York City's 8.2 million and London's 9.5 million and you can see things in perspective.

Statistics released by the Mumbai Police in their annual crime conference in early 2022 revealed about one-fourth of sanctioned posts in the Inspector cadre and about one-fifth of the sanctioned posts in the Constabulary are yet lying vacant.

Constabulary, which forms the backbone of ground-level policing, also has a high number of vacant posts. Of the total sanctioned strength of 40,622 posts, 33,236 comprising Police Constables, Police Naiks, Head Constables and Assistant Sub-Inspectors are filled, leaving 7,386 posts vacant.

These vacancies include 5,141 entry-level posts of Police Constables and 1,494 posts of Head Constables both of which play an important role in maintaining law and order.

To tackle the spread of COVID-19 and ensure social distancing, masking and mandatory 'stay indoors' caveats were followed, was a tall task. Particularly so, in the overflowing slum pockets that pepper the landscape of Colaba.

There was overwhelming resistance from slum residents 'contained' in crowded zones in tiny rooms ensconced in narrow lanes and frustrated on being forced to stay indoors for days on end.

With every passing day, cases of COVID-19 continued to surmount. Apart from the fear of contracting the virus, death and penury due to loss of work, it was the fear of the unknown that hit the worst. Nobody knew for how long would the turmoil last and when would it end, if at all.

The Draft Colaba's Unsung Mumbai Police - Colaba Division details the superhuman efforts undertaken by the Mumbai Police's Colaba Division that includes personnel from Cuffe Parade Police Station, Colaba Police Station and Marine Drive Police Station.

Two years after the first onslaught of COVID-19 and two lockdowns later, the slum-dwellers look back in gratitude.

The police recall their ordeals, the losses suffered within their ranks, how they performed their duty even in the face of a certain death and managed masses at the sure risk of contracting COVID-19 themselves.

Hundreds from the force got infected, registered losses even deaths along the way.

Here goes: A Tribute!

Watch Unsung Mumbai Police - Colaba Division (May 2022) here.
Watch Unsung - The Film (November 2020) here.
Watch all segments under #TheUnsungProject here.

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