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Aurangabad, India police force launch smart city hackathon

The Aurangabad police department has decided to launch a smart city hackathon, called the Idea Generation Project, to identify and create smart solutions for the police. Authorities are inviting participants, especially from engineering colleges.

The Aurangabad police commissioner, Nikhil Gupta, noted that the department is looking for innovation and technology in the areas that have a direct impact on the police and the public. The top three impressive ideas, technologies, or innovations will be given cash rewards of IN 50,000 (US$687), IN 25,000 (US$343), and IN 20,000 (US$274), respectively.

According to a news report, Gupta said the evaluation criteria include novelty of the idea, clarity, details in the prescribed format, feasibility, practical application, the scale of impact, user experience, and potential for future work.

Under the Idea Generation Project, city police are looking for smart solutions for traffic control management, database management and its use in CCTV footage data, handling of law and order situations, predicting crime, monitoring and management of police vehicles, identifying criminals, and police office task automation.

Participants are open to choose any of the mentioned areas to provide solutions. They may even propose other technology-based solutions that would eventually, ensure effective day-to-day policing, the report explained. Authorities have uploaded a PDF of the template on the city police website so that interested applicants can fill up the forms in the prescribed format.

Participants are required to attach a five-slide PowerPoint presentation outlining the idea, execution, and the end-result of their solution. City police expect every team to have at least two members and a maximum of four members, in addition to a mentor, who could be academicians, industrialists, or even police personnel. According to a senior officer, the last date for registration is 25 February and the last date for submission is 3 March. Following the knock-out rounds, a grand finale of the shortlisted submissions would be held on 30 March.

Earlier this month, the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) inaugurated the Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) Hackathon and Cyber Challenge 2020-21 in New Delhi. As OpenGov Asia had reported, the event was a continuation of the hackathon and cyber challenge that concluded last March.

Police officials, especially those from academia, the industry, and students have been invited to participate in the event to help improve existing information technology (IT) applications and help create new applications to improve the CCTNS ecosystem.

A mobile app, Locate Nearest Police Station, was also launched at the function. The app is expected to help commuters, interstate travelers, and domestic and foreign tourists, especially during emergencies. It has the facility to dial a helpline. The app can be downloaded from the master police portal, under the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). This will add to other central citizen services that are provided by the NCRB. Others include Missing Person Search, Generate Vehicle NOC, and Proclaimed Offenders Information, among others. This is another step towards improving the accessibility of the police force to citizens.

The Director of NCRB and senior officials from MHA NCRB were also present at the inaugural function, as well as senior police officers of states and union territories, and various other participants joined through the online platform.

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