About Kiran Bedi

Kiran Bedi, one of the most celebrated and widely known police officers who ever served the Indian Police Force, was born in Amritsar, Punjab state, India. She is the second of the four daughters of her parents, Prakash Lal Peshawaria and Prem Lata Peshawaria.

Education

She did her schooling from the Sacred Heart Convent School, Amritsar, where she joined the National Cadet Corps (NCC). She also took up tennis, a passion she inherited from her father, who himself was a talented tennis player. Later, she obtained her B.A. in English (Hons.) (1964-68) from the Government College for Women, Amritsar. She then earned a Master's degree (1968-70) in Political Science from Punjab University, Chandigarh, topping the University.

Even while in active service in the Indian Police, she continued her educational pursuits, and obtained a Law degree (LLB) in 1988 from Delhi University, Delhi. In 1993, she did her Ph.D. from Social Sciences from the Department of Social Sciences, the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi, where the topic of her thesis was 'Drug Abuse and Domestic Violence'.

Kiran Bedi won the Junior National Lawn Tennis Championship in 1966, the Asian Lawn Tennis Championship in 1972, and the All-India Interstate Women's Lawn Tennis Championship in 1976, besides this she also won the all-Asian tennis champion, and had won the Asian Ladies Title at the age of 22.

Career

She began her career as a Lecturer in Political Science (1970-72) at Khalsa College for Women, Amritsar, India. In July 1972, she joined the Indian Police Service. On her web site, she states that she joined the police service "because of my urge to be outstanding".
She served in a number of tough assignments ranging from Traffic Commissoner of New Delhi, Deputy Inspector General of Police in insurgency prone Mizoram, Advisor to the Lieutanent Governor of Chandigarh, Director General of Narcotics Control Bureau and also on a United Nations deputation, where she became the Civilian Police Advisor in the United Nations peacekeeping department, and for which she was awarded with the UN medal. She is popularly referred to as Crane Bedi for towing the Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's car for a parking violation (the PM was on tour of United States then).

Kiran Bedi influenced several decisions of the Indian Police Service, particularly in the areas of control over narcotics, traffic management, and VIP security. During her stint as the Inspector General of Prisons, Tihar Jail (Delhi) (1993-1995), she instituted a number of reforms in the management the prison, and initiated a number of measures such as detoxification programs, yoga, vipassana meditation, redressing of complaints by prisoners and literacy programs. For this she not only won the 1994 Ramon Magsaysay Award, but was also awarded the 'Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship', to write about the work done at Tihar Jail.

She was last appointed as Director General of India's Bureau of Police Research and Development.

In May 2005, she was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Law In recognition of her "humanitarian approach to prison reforms and policing".

On 27th November 2007, she had expressed her wish to take Voluntary Retirement from job to take up new challenges in life.On 25th December 2007, Government of India decided to relieve Bedi, who was holding the post of the director general of Bureau of Police Research and Development, from her duties immediately.

"Yes Madam, Sir" a documentary of Kiran Bedi's life, directed by Australian Megan Doneman, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival September 5, 2008.

After retirement Kiran Bedi launched a new website, www.saferindia.com, on January 3, 2007. The motto of this website is to help people whose complaints are not accepted by the local police. This project is undertaken by the non-profit, voluntary and non-government organisaton, India Vision Foundation.

Contributions

Navajyoti (which literally means New Enlightenment), set up in 1987, and India Vision Foundation, set up in 1994, are the two major voluntary organizations established by her with the objectives of improving the condition of the drug addicts and the poor people. Her efforts have won national and international recognition, and her organizations was awarded the Serge Soitiroff Memorial Award for drug abuse prevention by the United Nations.

She also started one site named http://www.saferindia.com to log complaint regarding any crime if the police at the concerned area denies to accept complaint. Then the NGO behind this site mails complaint to the DGP of concerned area.This mail can also be used as the legal document in case of filing a case in the court of judgement.

She has written her autobiography, 'I Dare. It's Always Possible', which was released in 1998.

Personal life

Kiran Bedi married Brij Bedi in 1972, the year she started her career in the Indian Police Service (IPS), and three years later, in 1975, they had daughter Saina. Among her other three siblings, Shashi is settled in Canada, Reeta is a Tennis player and writer, and Anu is also Tennis player.

Bibliography

    * Its Always Possible: Kiran Bedi. Oct 1999, Indra Publishing. ISBN 0958580537.
    * "What Went Wrong?", collection of The fortnightly column written by Kiran Bedi.
    * The Motivating Bedi by Kiran Bedi.

Awards

Kiran Bedi has received a number of Awards, including the following:

    * President's Gallantry Award (1979)
    * Women of the Year Award (1980)
    * Asia Region Award for Drug Prevention and Control (1991)
    * Magsaysay Award (1994) for Government Service
    * Mahila Shiromani Award (1995)
    * Father Machismo Humanitarian Award (1995)
    * Lion of the Year (1995)
    * Joseph Beuys Award (1997)
    * Pride of India (1999)
    * Mother Teresa Memorial National Award for Social Justice (2005)

Books on Kiran Bedi

    * 'I Dare!' biography of Kiran Bedi by Parmesh Dangwal.
    * Kiran Bedi ó The Kindly Baton, by Dr Meenakshi Saksena,
    * "Government@net" by Sandeep Srivastava and Parminder Jeet Singh.

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Photos of Kiran Bedi

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  • Shivshakti Sachdev with Kiran Bedi Additi Gupta , Sara Khan , Parul Chauhan , Hina Khan, Kiran Bedi on SPA 2009 Kiran Bedi in the show Aap Ki Kachehri
  • A still image of Kiran Bedi

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