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D Roopa Moudgil, IPS

OPEN WINDOWS | BY HEERA

March 31st, 2018

 

D Roopa Moudgil, IPS, is the first woman Indian Police Service official from Karnataka, India and the recipient of the President’s Police Medal for Meritorious Service.  In my conversation with D Roopa Moudgil, IPS, she underlines her values and principles that govern her policing and sheds light on society’s dismantling at the hands of corruption and the need for police accessibility accountability.

 

As a child, what exposure did you have to the world beyond Davanagere?

[Laughs] This rare question makes me remember my childhood. When I was in the fourth standard—and those days there was no television; radio was everything. On Sunday’s, there was an hour-long children’s program on the environment followed by questions; children were encouraged to send in their answers to Akashwani [the national public radio broadcaster of India].

My mother encouraged me to listen to the program and helped me with the answers, which she would then send to Akashwani. 20 to 30 children, who answered well, were selected and given a prize. The prize ceremony was held in the Bangalore Town Hall, with the Governor of Bangalore, Khurshid Alam Khan, presiding as the Chief Guest. I received a small microscope as a prize. That was the first time I moved out of Davanagere for an achievement.

 

After your first taste of achievement, did you subsequently travel out of Davanagere?

Yes, I did. I participated in many district-level competitions. I went to Chitradurga [an administrative district of Karnataka state in southern India] for competitions and science seminars. I came to Bangalore during my eighth standard to attend science seminars conducted by the Vishweshwaraiah Museum—they held science seminars every year for schools and separately for collages; I participated in both levels and was selected at the district level. When we came to Bangalore for science exhibitions, we stayed in Mount Carmel hostel and in a school called Mitralaya girls school. These are nice memories.

 

How did your home environment contribute to your foundation?

I grew up with working parents who were central government employees. My father was a BSNL engineer [Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited, an Indian state-owned telecommunications company], and my mother was s Superintendent of Postal Services. Since it was just my sister and me, we grew up without experiencing any discrimination.

Though our progressive mother, being a working mother, couldn’t give us quantity time, she gave us quality time. And she never told me: “You are a girl, and you will grow up to be someone’s wife, someone’s bahu [daughter-in-law], so you must learn to cook.” Even when I offered to help her, she would insist I study or prepare for the various competitions in which I was participating. This supportive attitude and progressive environment I grew up in helped me a lot.

 

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