An Indian police force urged its officers to shed some pounds or face suspension. The chief of Karnataka State Reserve Police (KSRP) said he was concerned about the mounting number of obese officers in the force. Bhaskar Rao said he made the decision after more than 100 officers died as a result of lifestyle-related illnesses in just 18 months.
Lifestyle diseases are commonly caused by alcohol, drug and smoking abuse, unhealthy eating, a lack of physical activity and a sedentary way of life.The commanders of all 12 platoons have been ordered to identify members of staff who are dangerously overweight and place them on a healthy diet and strict exercise regime.
Staff will be handed a deadline to curtail their weight and those who do not manage to do so will face disciplinary action.
Mr Rao said:
About 150 policemen, aged 40-50 years, die every year from lifestyle-related ailments. Many of them have a history of cardiac problems, blood pressure and diabetes, and also heavy drinking and smoking habits, Such mortality rates in the force are unacceptable. Some discipline and a healthy diet can make a big difference.
We started the process of monitoring their [KSRP officers’] sugar and other health indices six months ago. The latest circular that they will face suspension and removal from employment is a threat to those who are careless [about their health]. “In the last 18 months, 153 of our men have died. Out of these, 24 died in road accidents and nine killed themselves. The rest have died due to lifestyle-related diseases like cardiac problems and diabetes. This is the biggest wake-up call that a force can get.”
He explained officers predominantly consumed rice-based fried food, smoked, drank, and failed to exercise. He said platoon commanders have been ordered to routinely keep tabs on the body mass index (BMI) of all policemen.
The KSRP has started delivering classes in yoga, swimming, and other sports to help the police officers lose weight.
Culled from The Independent