For the first time, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has approved the trial specification and trial for the shock batons to be used by the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPF) during its deployments in maintaining law and order.
According to the letter sent to the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), these batons will be used as 'Self Defence and Deterrence' by the security personnel to handle unruly demonstrators.
According to the specifications, this handheld device should be battery operated; one kg in weight, dimension, and length would be of 450 mm-700 mm, can work under the temperature variation from minus 20 to 50 degrees Celsius and made of such material which can sustain the impact of shock.
The baton while used against demonstrators, the electrical spark must be visible at the fore-end and must not penetrate or cut human skin.
The MHA has also specified that this equipment must be certified by the National Accreditation Board for Testing and Calibration Laboratories (NABL) or any government-approved lab within three years for the whole equipment.
These shock batons will be used by all Central para-military forces during its deployments in assisting the state administration to help them maintain order in Public life.
The MHA has also asked the CRPF to upload the results of the testing of the baton on the website of the Ministry. CRPF's various battalions like Rapid Action Force (RAF) and other units of ITBP, BSF, CISF are often deployed by the local administration to deal with crowd management with the state police or during the elections.
The use of shock batons has hardly any risk in comparison with the tear-gas shelling, lathi charge or even firing at the protesting crowd.