Vrindavan has been declared as an official holy pilgrimage site by the Government of Uttar Pradesh and keeping in line with the declaration, Mathura Police may soon get new uniforms with logos of Lord Krishna on the shoulder badges along with the words “Tourism Police”, all the while wearing their usual rank insignia as well. According to the SSP Mathura Police, Swapnil Mangain, the purpose behind the move is to make the UP Police more tourist-friendly. This has come after the UP Police was severely criticized for the assault on a Swiss couple in Fatehpur Sikri by some local youths and minors.
Although, the Police Department, like all the other organs of the state, is in accordance with the secular ideas of our Constitution and is not supposed to carry or display the images, icons, Gods or holy symbols of any religion, a proposal has still been made for the issue of these logos to be stitched on the new uniforms and displayed prominently. The proposal is currently with the Director-General of Police but it seems like the design for the logo that has been selected is final. There has been a lot of criticism for this proposal along with the saffronization agenda of the Uttar Pradesh Government.
Former DGP Brij Lal believes that the proposal should be denied as it dents the secular image of the police department. The National Spokesperson for Congress, Vivek Bansal said that India is a secular nation and any government should not propagate or patronize any single religion. He also pointed out that Vrindavan Tourism does not cater to just Hindus, but enjoys tourism from people of all faiths. However, a senior BJP leader said that Mathura and Vrindavan are often associated with Lord Krishna and he sees nothing wrong with the local Mathura police having images of the Lord on their badges. SSP Mangain said that the logos and images will provide a distinctive identity to the Mathura police personnel.