Now policemen in Bombay and New Bombay think they are God's gift to mankind. We assumed things must have changed, what with the periodic lectures by Commissioners hinting at what they have been doing to make the police public friendly. But we must confess we received a frosty and less than friendly welcome at this chowky. Our friend Henry initiated the process.
"We need your telephone number in case there is a housebreak or roberry." He didn't give a straight answer, instead the conversation went something as follows:
"Where do you live?"
Henry told him.
"How long have you been living here."
Henry told him it has been around two decades.
"I have not seen you around here."
Henry said it's not his (Henry's) fault.
"Telephone numbers are not given. You phone the main police station and they will inform us."
End of interview. Is he the taciturn type, or what? We don't know. We were not given the telephone numbers by these servants of the people. We thought something was seriously lacking in their training. We were made to feel like culprits instead of law abiding citizens. Then all those rumours about what happens in a police station could be true, we assume. Just assuming.