Police Reforms – SC directives, NPC, other committees reports

Parliament breach accused underwent Psychoanalysis


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Psychoanalysis

Mains level: Read the attached story


Central Idea

  • The Delhi Police’s use of psychoanalysis for assessing motives in the Parliament breach incident highlights its contemporary relevance.

Origins of Psychoanalysis

  • Development by Freud: Sigmund Freud, a Viennese psychiatrist, developed psychoanalysis as a modern Western system of psychotherapy.
  • Evolution over Time: Initially a treatment for unexplained symptoms, psychoanalysis has evolved, influenced by various scientific disciplines.
  • Goal of Psychoanalysis: It aims to enhance self-awareness by uncovering unconscious wishes and defenses.

Concept of the Unconscious

  • Freud’s Central Theory: The unconscious contains memories and impulses inaccessible to conscious awareness due to their threatening nature.
  • Mechanisms of Repression: Repression plays a key role in psychoanalysis, involving the unconscious forgetting of painful ideas to protect the psyche.
  • Id, Ego, and Superego: Freud’s model of the psyche includes the instinct-driven id, the rational ego, and the normative superego.

Fantasies, Defenses, and Resistance in Psychoanalysis

  • Role of Fantasies: Fantasies, according to Freud, fulfill psychic needs and provide imaginary wish fulfillment.
  • Defense Mechanisms: Intrapsychic processes like projection, reaction formation, and rationalization help avoid emotional pain.
  • Concept of Resistance: Freud observed resistance in clients reluctant to engage in therapy, leading to the practice of free association.

Transference and Countertransference

  • Transference Dynamics: Clients often project past relational templates onto the therapist, offering insights into their behavior.
  • Countertransference Issues: Therapists’ unresolved conflicts can affect their feelings towards clients, necessitating self-analysis.

Psychoanalysis as a Therapeutic Tool

  • Dream Interpretation: Freud viewed dreams as forms of wish fulfillment, central to psychoanalytic therapy.
  • Making the Unconscious Conscious: The goal is to bring unconscious drives into awareness to understand self-defeating behaviors.
  • Therapeutic Relationship: The therapist-client relationship can provide new relational experiences, challenging maladaptive models.

Contemporary Psychoanalytic Practice

  • Shift to Shorter Sessions: Modern psychoanalysis often involves fewer sessions per week, adapting to practical and individual needs.
  • Long-Term vs. Short-Term Therapy: While some issues require long-term treatment, contemporary practice accommodates shorter, more focused consultations.


  • Enduring Relevance: Despite its evolution, psychoanalysis remains a vital tool for understanding human behavior and mental health.
  • Adaptation and Integration: Modern psychoanalytic practice has adapted to contemporary needs while retaining core principles.
  • Broader Applications: Beyond therapy, psychoanalysis offers insights into various aspects of human behavior, as evidenced by its use in legal and investigative contexts.

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