Mounted Police

The Kolkata Mounted Police was first introduced in the town in 1840 with only two sowars under a dafadar (head officer) to carry messages and inform the harbour master whenever any ship was sighted. In 1842, arrangements were made for mounted policemen to patrol the maidan area. Prior to 1905 the sowars were all Indians. But with a view to accommodating five European constables, the strength of the mounted constables was reduced from thirty-five to twenty. This was done for regulation of traffic in parts of the town other than the European quarter, to which they were not practically confined. At present the Kolkata Mounted Police which consists of one inspector, one sergeant-major, twelve sergeants, one j.c.o., five head sowars, eighty-five sowars and ninety-eight syces, is mainly deployed to regulate crowds on the maidan during sporting events and fairs. This unit also participates in ceremonial parades and mounts guard at Raj Bhavan during the visit of VIPs.