Police Verification Likely for Recruits of Startups IT Cos

If Bengaluru police intelligence wing has its way, then new recruits of startups and IT firms will need to undergo a compulsory background check from the police.This, police believe, is necessary to keep a check on terrorist activities.

Apparently, the Ministry of Home Affairs through the Intelligence Bureau (IB) has told Karnataka Police that some engineers with a terrorism-linked past have infiltrated into Bengaluru's IT industry.

“We plan to send a proposal to Police Commissioner and the DGP requesting them to issue a circular to all startups and IT companies in Bengaluru. We'll need to check their recruitment lists to do a background verification for new employees,“ DCP (Intelligence) Maheshwarappa S told ET.

As of now, such verification is mandatory only for cab drivers and school staffers. In the calendar year up to Sep 21, the city police received only 13,824 applications for verification from the private sector, and the police are not happy about the number. City Police Commissioner N S Megharikh told ET that he is yet to get a formal proposal from his intelligence wing. “We will take a decision based on the nature of recommendations made by our officers,“ he said.

The police believe such checks in the IT, BPO and startup sectors has become more necessary as they employ a million plus people in Bengaluru. “They come from all over the world, and some may have had terrorist links,“ said Police Inspector B Ramakrishna, who is incharge of the background verification unit. “We have to take this step in the best interests of the society because we are living in a changed world,“ he said.

If the plan goes through, the newly-recruited professionals may have to visit the local police station, and their background will be verified based on their personal and professional details shared by the employer.

Business services firm Quess Corp's CEO Ajit Isaac doubts the Police department's capacity to deliver the reports in time, and any delay , he said, could slow the hiring process. “Given the attrition levels in the industry , it will add to HR cost of operations,“ he said.

The Economic Times, New Delhi, 30th Sept. 2015

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