New Delhi: Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, himself a former Sub-Inspector, does not like lousy and pot-bellied cops and said a policeman should be "sturdy" and not look like an "old man".
"Many times we feel that a Home Guard is just standing and he is in uniform. I personally feel that a man who is in uniform must be sturdy and very perfect to show that a man who is wearing uniform is my protector. He should not look like an old man of 75-80 years...," Shinde said.
He was addressing the top brass of central police and paramilitary forces on the occasion of the Golden jubilee celebrations of Civil Defence and Home Guards here.
"I think you all (police and paramilitary chiefs) will take note of this," he said.
Shinde, during the event, also urged the citizens to enroll in big numbers as a `volunteer` for the Civil Defence force as he rued that a number of these inductions are just token.
"This is one force that we have to make very strong and very disciplined. I know the enrollment that is being done here (in Civil Defence) is just for the sake of enrollment and it is not upto the mark as soldiers," he said as he urged people to join Civil Defence in big numbers.
According to official data, there are 5,35,155 registered volunteers in the Civil Defence ranks across the country and the Union Home Ministry is planning to bring these numbers to a minimum one per cent of the total population in the next 5-10 years.
Shinde said the Civil Defence organisation was raised in the aftermath of the 1962 Chinese aggression.
"Recently when we had little experience of Chinese incursion, it reminds me of the Civil Defence...," he said adding these volunteers should continuously be trained to face any man-made or natural disaster erupting in the country anytime.
"We should always prepare when we are in peace...If you want to fight war we have to prepare in peace. Government is with you and you should be with us," Shinde said.
The Home Minister said a "missionary zeal" is needed to serve in the ranks of the Civil Defence and this is one of the best services to be rendered by a citizen for the nation.