An inspector-general of police is a senior police officer in the police force or police service of several nations. The rank usually refers to the head of a large regional command within a police service, and in many countries refers to the most senior officer of the entire national police.
During the British India era, the British Government introduced the Indian Councils Act 1861. The act created a new cadre of police, called Superior Police Services, later known as the Indian Imperial Police. The highest rank in the service was the Inspector General.
Currently, in modern India, an Inspector General of Police (IGP) is only an officer from Indian Police Service. In a state, an IGP holds the third-highest rank in the hierarchy, just below the rank of Additional Director General of Police and above Deputy Inspector General of Police. IG-ranked wear Gorget patches on their collar. Although it has a dark blue background which is similar to DIGs and SSPs, an oak leaf pattern is stitched on the patch; unlike DIGs and SSPs, which have a white line stitched on the patch.
In Indonesia, an Inspector General of Police (Inspektur Jenderal Polisi or abbreviated Irjen (Pol)) holds the third highest rank of the Indonesian National Police (equivalent to a major general in the Indonesian National Armed Forces). Usually, police with rank Inspector General of Police became a chief of regional police department with "Type-A Classification" (capital city, strategic and major/densely populated provinces), chief of divisions, special staff to the Chief of National Police, or deputy head of any agency under the police's territory.
In Kenya, the top-ranked police officer is the Inspector-General of Police, who has the overall command of the Kenya National Police Service. In the event of a vacancy arising, the procedure for appointment of the Inspector-General is:
The IG is charged with the overall administrative management of the police force, exercises independent command over the National Police Service and performs any other functions prescribed by national legislation. Consequently, (s)he reports directly to the President and is also a member of the National Security Council, chaired by the President. Under the IG are two Deputy Inspector-Generals who command the Kenya Police Service and the Administration Police Service respectively. The Inspector-General is appointed for a single four-year term, and is not eligible for re-appointment. (S)he may be removed from office by the President only on the grounds of:
An Inspector-General of Police heads the Nigeria Police Force.
An Inspector General of Police (IGP) is the head of policing in the provinces and administrative units of Pakistan. The IGP is a three star appointment in Pakistan. Grade BS 22/21
In Sierra Leone the Inspector General of Police is the head of the Sierra Leone Police force. He heads the force (nationally), which is one of the oldest continuously operational police services in Africa. He is assisted by a Deputy Inspector General, and several Assistant Inspectors General.
The Inspector General of Police is the highest rank in the Uganda Police Force (UPF). Since 2001, the position has been held by a two-star military general of the Uganda People's Defense Force (UPDF).
In Northern Ireland, the chief officer of the former Royal Ulster Constabulary (now replaced by the Police Service of Northern Ireland) was titled inspector general until 1970, when following a review the post was renamed chief constable.