In Pictures: The story behind one of Bangalore's oldest Police Station
The untold stories behind one of the oldest police stations in Bangalore.
Housed in a colonial style building, Bharathinagar Police Station built in 1929 by the British colonial administrators is one of the oldest police stations in the city. In its initial days, it was one of the pillars of the young police force and was the center of the administration of law and order as the police headquarters were housed behind the station. There have been many attempts by the BBMP to renovate this building but nothing has been done so far, because of the heritage value attached to this place. As of now the station has one police inspector, four police sub-inspectors, five assistant sub-inspectors, 23 head constables and 53 police constables
The old brick building is surrounded by greenery on all four sides and has an array of mango, jackfruit and coconut trees. Though the station is reminiscent of the bygone era, it reeks of certain eeriness. During the construction of St. Francis Xavier Cathedral in the year 1911, the construction workers were stationed at this building. However it was later converted to Cleveland Town Police Station, where some of the freedom fighters were imprisoned.
KR Ganesh, Police Inspector who was earlier in charge of the station, says “Cleveland Town was popularly known as Horse Rider's Street, as horsemen frequently travelled through this area to get to MG Road. The station came to be known as Bharathinagar Police Station in 1973 and this place has a lot of stories to tell. Every nook and corner in this station reminds one of the torture that people were put through. Many people have lost their lives here and sadly not many know the significance of this station. There was only one cell, with small ventilation and no other facilities and hordes of people were crammed in this place.”
Ganesh who studied in the nearby Aloysius School in Frazer Town would often visit the station to meet his Uncle LM Gowda who was the inspector at that time. “My uncle used to narrate the stories of gore and death in great detail, after which I never wanted to join the Police force. But fate had other plans for me and I was posted here. There were days initially where I would look at the walls and think of all the things this place has seen and it would creep me out. But to quote Shakespeare, I think ‘Life is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing’,” concludes Ganesh.