From witty posts to safety apps, the Bengaluru City Police have turned tech-savvy

The social media pages by Bengaluru City Police were started in 2011 and they were one of the first police departments in the country to utilise this medium to communicate with the public

by Neethu Mohan
Published - Feb 4, 2019 8:14 AM Updated: Feb 4, 2019 8:14 AM
Bengaluru Police

The Bengaluru police are taking public awareness to the next level with the usage of their social media accounts. The Bengaluru City police (BCP) which has around 1.2+ million followers on their Twitter account and around 636+K followers on Facebook, is exploring the reachability of social media to communicate with the public. The BCP also resorts to technology, the applications such as Suraksha, Namma 100, Know your Police station are also dedicated to addressing grievances by the public.

The social media team of BCP uses humour and pop culture in the form of memes to communicate with the public on various topics ranging from traffic regulations to creating awareness about offences, such as drug peddling and abuse. The team was in news earlier for using 'Game of Thrones', 'Stranger Things' references in their social media posts which were aimed at public awareness.

The social media pages by Bengaluru City Police (BCP) were started in 2011 and full-fledged activities started in the year 2014. They were one of the first police departments in the country to utilize the reach of social media. The social media team comprises 12 members with graduate or post-graduate degrees.

The social media team

The team posts memes on a daily basis. The team is equipped with a weekly calendar where they shortlist themes for daily posts. The posts on weekdays are focused on traffic regulations and road safety and the posts on weekends will be focused on drinking and driving. The ideation, message, and creativity pertaining to the memes are done under the guidance of senior police officials.

The memes are famous for their witty content and trending topics. When 'Game of Thrones' (GoT) was trending on the social media, the team used characters from GoT to create a post on road safety. The team also has done awareness posts on KiKi challenge. The viral posts had themes from 'Narcos', 'Wonder Woman', 'PUBG',  etc.

 

20-years of Harry Potter was also conceptualised into a post by the team.

 

The #10yearchallenge also found a way onto the BCP social media page.

The social media posts by the BCP received an overwhelming response from the public with most of the posts receiving thousands of shares and comments. Apart from daily memes, the pages also post press releases, new regulations, and announcements by senior police officials.

The final approval of the memes and posts are done by senior officials. The team is active in Snapchat, Instagram, WhatsApp and YouTube, and the team receives complaints through WhatsApp as well. The Bengaluru Traffic Police (BTP) is also active on the social media and has around 495+K followers on Facebook. BTP has around 548.8K followers on Twitter.

The use of technology and addressing grievances

Apart from creating awareness, the team is also focused on addressing grievances by the public. The messages received by the social media team undergoes filtration and the complaints are segregated based on the police station and other divisions and are then passed on to the concerned team. The social media team will also do a follow up on the complaints received and will revert to the complainant with the action taken. The social media team is also keen on curbing fake news.

“When the Kaveri issue was a burning topic in Karnataka, fake news and the public were misinformed about the situation of the state. The social media team gave live updates from different regions on the official social media handles,” said an official.

The senior officials starting from Commissioner of police to the Sub-inspectors have their own Twitter handles.

The BCP also has different apps for public and grievances and complaints are addressed through these apps as well. The Namma 100 app, Suraksha, Know Your Police Station are launched to serve the public in a better way.

“The social media is one of the ways in which we educate and create public awareness among the public. The Namma 100 app is another way which we use technology to serve the people. It is a one point contact to get through the police officials. The police officials will be deputed to the spot of emergency, previously the arrival time was 15 minutes and now the arrival time has been decreased below 10 minutes,” said an official.

The Bengaluru City Police were the first in the country to have active social media handles and the police departments from other states, as well as Bangladesh police, have also visited the Bengaluru team to learn how social media can be effectively used to communicate with the public.

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