Pay from pocket for extra fuel expenses, cops told

Police sources said that such circulars are issued from time to time by the finance department asking officials to restrict uneconomic trips and restrained use of department vehicles, but the present increase in fuel price has meant that this will be followed strictly this time.
Representative Image
Representative Image

CHENNAI: The unchecked rise in fuel prices has not spared even the State Police department. A circular has been issued from the office of the Director General of Police (DGP) to department heads asking their officials to be judicious of fuel usage while using government vehicles for official purposes. The officials have been warned that fuel consumption higher than the fixed ceiling will lead to the officials concerned paying out of their own pockets for government work.

Police sources said that such circulars are issued from time to time by the finance department asking officials to restrict uneconomic trips and restrained use of department vehicles, but the present increase in fuel price has meant that this will be followed strictly this time.

According to a senior police officer, the maximum fuel ceiling fixed for police vehicles is 195 litres of petrol or 125- 150 litres of diesel per month for officers having district level jurisdiction.

“Keeping in mind the rising prices and crunch in fuel availability, the Union and state governments have been advising fuel usage control. So, if any government vehicle is found using more fuel than the fixed ceiling amount, claim/reimbursement will not be given and additional charges will be deducted from the official using the vehicle, ” the circular noted.

Officers have been advised to issue strict orders to their personnel to use the vehicles within the jurisdiction and not exceed the monthly ceiling at any cost.

A senior officer with Chennai police said they have been hearing about such instruction coming from the top brass, but have not officially received the communication yet. Police personnel working in districts and rural areas will bear the brunt of this more, according to officials. “The ceiling of 125 litres per month can cover about 1,250 to 1,300 km only, and this is stretching mileage of the old police vehicles. This will definitely be a challenge,” said an Inspector in Southern Tamil Nadu, adding, many will now be forced to use public transport, which might hamper progress of cases.

An assistant commissioner serving in the city pointed out that several of the police vehicles are old and not maintained as they are supposed to be. “The fuel ceiling has remained the same for several years now despite requests to increase the slab. There are many old vehicles in the department which are still in use and the mileage per litre in such vehicles are low, ” the officer said.

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