NEW DELHI: Police dogs that are part of canine squads of Central para-military forces shall now be evaluated annually based on ‘K9 proficiency evaluation test’ developed by the home ministry in line with global performance standards.
All young dogs will be put through ‘K9 behaviour assessment test’ at the entry level to evaluate their suitability for detection purpose or patrol work or for both, and get trained accordingly, a top official in the home ministry told TOI.
The K9 proficiency evaluation test (PET) and K9 behaviour assessment test (BAT) have been devised by the MHA Police K9 cell, a dedicated wing established last year under the police modernisation division of the home ministry with the mandate of mainstreaming and augmentation of police K9s. “With BAT it would be easy to screen the most suitable pups or young adults and PET would help in evaluating serving police dogs.
These test models were shared with central para-military forces in September for implementation,” Col P K Chug, consulting director of the MHA Police K9 cell, told TOI. BAT consists of 12 subtests that evaluate the behaviour/reaction of a dog on counts such as affability, handling, visual startle, acoustic startle and gunshot reaction, etc. “A dog displays less or no reaction to these sub-tests.
Based on results, one can determine if the dog is suited to and has a flair for detection or patrol work, or both,” said Chug. Regarding PET, he said the MHA has given the central forces two years for compliance. “This means that dogs who fail to clear the test can be put through refresher courses to enhance their proficiency to the level demanded by the test, which they must clear,” he said.
An advantage of the yearly evaluations is that testimony of the dogs shall be admissible in the court. This means that the evidence gathered by the canines in the form of narcotics, explosives, etc. shall be admissible in a court of law since their proficiency would have been certified within a legally accepted timeframe.