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Indian Government Denies Private Firms Access To Official Crime Database

The government said private firms cannot access the crime database to conduct background checks on employees.

NEW DELHI — The Indian government has said that private firms are not allowed to access the Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System (CCTNS) and other government databases for conducting background checks on employees.

The Indian Ministry of Home Affairs said private firms are not allowed access to government databases through a written reply to a series of questions in the Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Indian parliament.

“The companies who want to pay also cannot avail access to Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System and get any information through its data,” the Ministry of Home Affairs said.

Ajay Kumar Mishra, a Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs, shared the information through a written reply on July 20 after being question by senior political leader Shashi Tharoor, who is from the opposition party, the Indian National Congress.

Tharoor asked if the government has decided to allow private companies to have access to the Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System and other government databases to conduct background checks, to which Mishra replied, “No, sir.”

The Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System is a scheme conceived in the light of a non-plan scheme called the Common Integrated Police Application (CIPA).

The CIPA was designed and developed to maintain details relating to all the activities of the police stations regarding crime and criminals in India.

The Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System replaced the Common Integrated Police Application in 2009 when the government felt the existing system was not able to provide enhanced outcomes in the areas of crime investigation and criminals detection.

The Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System is a Mission Mode Project under the National e-Governance Plan (NeGP) of the central government. It aims to create a comprehensive and integrated system for enhancing the efficiency and effectiveness of policing through the principle of e-governance.

“Under the Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System Project, as per Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs note approx. 14,000 Police Stations throughout the country had been proposed to be automated,” said the Indian National Crime Records Bureau.

“Beside 6000 higher offices in the police hierarchy, e.g., Circles, Sub-Divisions, Districts, Range, Zones, Police Headquarters, State Crime Records Bureaux (SCRBx) including scientific and technical organizations having databases required for providing assistance and information for investigation and other purposes, e.g., fingerprint Bureaux, Forensic Labs, etc.”

The governance plan is working towards the creation of nationwide networking infrastructure for the evolution of an IT-enabled state-of-the-art tracking system around the investigation of crime and detection of criminals.

An allocation of INR 2,000 crores ($268.7 million) was made for the Crime and Criminals Tracking Network System project. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved the project on June 19, 2009.

(With inputs from ANI)

(Edited by Abinaya Vijayaraghavan and Praveen Pramod Tewari)

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