In India, the police force performs the arduous task of preserving harmonious law and order in society. The Police, a component of the Executive, is a hierarchical institution headed by the Director-General of Police (DGP). On the other hand, a Commissioner heads a Commissionerate composed of a metropolitan city or a group of several districts. The Difference Between Commissioner and DGP is simplified in this article as follows:
Who is Commissioner?
The Commissioner of Police heads the Commissionerate, an amalgamation of several districts or a single metropolitan city. The Commissioner enjoys additional magisterial powers, generally enjoyed by the District Collector/ District Magistrate. The officers of the Indian Police Service (IPS) hold the post after a series of promotions.
The British government established the first police Commissionerate in Calcutta (Kolkata) and Chennai in 1856, followed by Bombay (Mumbai) in 1864.
Who is the Director-General of Police [DGP]?
The Director-General of Police is the head of the whole police force of a State or a Union Territory in India. Appointed by the Cabinet, the Director-General of Police is a 3-star rank, equivalent to the Lieutenant General in the Indian Army.
The Difference Between Commissioner and DGP
The Commissioner of Police and the DGP have the same rank in some places. For example, in Delhi, the Commissioner is the DGP. Also, in Mumbai, the Commissioner is an officer of the DGP rank. It is the only state in India where the Commissioner (of Mumbai Police) does not report to the DGP, but both report to the Additional Chief Secretary of the Home Department.
Director-General of Police [DGP]
The Commissioner of Police is the head of the Police Commissionerate, a metropolitan city or an amalgamation of several districts.
The DGP heads the entire police force of an Indian State or Union Territory of India.
It is a post that may or may not exist in all the States and the Union Territories. For example, Andhra Pradesh has a Commissioner, but Bihar does not.
It is a rank in the police hierarchy, existing in every state and the Union Territory.
The Commissioner reports to the DGP.
The Director-General of Police reports to the Home Secretary or Additional Chief Secretary of the Home Department.
Any officer above the rank of a Superintendent of Police (SP) can be a Commissioner. For instance, the Commissioner of Police of Thrissur district of Kerala is an SP, while the Commissioner of Police of Delhi is a DGP.
Being a 3-star rank, it is the highest rank in the state police hierarchy. However, you can find the DGP heading other institutions like the Central Bureau of Investigation, National Investigation Agency, Research and Analysis Wing, Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau, etc.
FAQs on Difference Between Commissioner and DGP
Q.1. What is the Main Difference Between Commissioner and DGP?
The Main Difference Between Commissioner and DGP is that while the Commissioner heads the Commissionerate, an amalgamation of several districts or a metropolitan city, the DGP commands the entire police force of a state or a union territory.
Q.2. What is the Difference Between Commissioner and DGP regarding their appointment?
The Ministry of Home Affairs or the Cabinet, in some cases, appoints the Commissioner of Police. However, according to the Supreme Court judgment on Kuldip Nayar vs. Union of India & Ors (2016), the Cabinet shall appoint the Director-General of Police in consultation with the UPSC.
Q.3. What blurs the Difference Between Commissioner and DGP?
A DGP-rank officer heads the Commissionerates of Mumbai and Bangalore, while another DGP heads the state police of Maharashtra and Karnataka, creating dual centres of command and control.
Q.4. Is there any Difference Between Commissioner and DGP in Delhi?
No, there is not any Difference Between Commissioner and DGP in Delhi. Delhi is the only place where both positions are the same.