Media: The Independent
The Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI), modelled after the USA’s Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), is fast gaining ground. In just 24 days since it began its official journey, the PBI has received and initiated investigations into 91 cases till now.
The specialised unit of Bangladesh Police has officially extended its operations to 29 districts last week. Launching operations in 10 districts on June 10 this year, The PBI has gradually increased its foothold and extended operations to 19 more districts in two phases.
Much like the FBI, highly placed officials in the PBI believe that the force will be a symbol of confidence as far as impartial investigations based on scientific methods are concerned.
“The force will set up its offices in 64 districts of the country in a phased manner within one year,” said Barrister Mahbubur Rahman, Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG) and Chief of the PBI.
“We are getting huge response from courts. Courts give us sensational cases everyday and we hope to submit flawless investigation reports which will help the cause of justice,” he added.
The newly launched wing of the police has already been provided with a total of 800 personnel, including a Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG), two Additional DIGs, nine Superintendents of Police (SPs) and 70 Additional Superintendents of Police.
Launched with the pledge to cut down on the time period of investigations through the use of scientific methods, the force is today equipped with investigation kit, just like the FBI.
“The members of the specialised force have received a minimum of eight to 16 modern training sessions both at home and abroad on crime scene management and evidences,” said Mia Masud Karim, Superintendent of Police (Administration) at PBI.
A team from FBI has imparted training to some members of the force to enhance the investigative skills of the force. Moreover, the members of the force have also received training from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).
The PBI will be assigned with the investigation of the top ten cases in order of importance. Besides, the PBI will carry out investigative activities ordered by courts, like murder, robbery, abduction, rape, arms cases, explosive, smuggling, black marketing, human trafficking, narcotics and cyber crimes.
In 2010, around 76 per cent of the criminal cases in the lower courts of the country lost their merit in the absence of evidence. Taking the issue into consideration, the concerned authorities submitted a proposal seeking a separate investigation unit in 2011. The idea was to identify the real criminals and bring them to book through proper investigation.
The PBI has been formed by the Ministry of Home Affairs under section of 12 of the Police Act 1861. The consent of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in this regard came on October 18, 2012.
After facing several tangles initially, the organisation began work on June 10 this year. However, the ordinance for the specialised force proposed three years ago is yet to get approval.
Meanwhile, the Chittagong unit of the PBI has received the highest numbers of cases from court. A total of 23 cases, which are Complaint Register (CR) ones, were received by the elite police unit The first case handed to them on June 6 this year was that of Fatikchhari Somitir Hat and involved clashes between two groups of local people.
The PBI has also submitted a report on a case where the Coast Guard seized 2,20,000 pieces of contraband yaba tablets on September, 19, 2014, from an engine-run boat at the outer anchorage of Chittagong Port.
“We will be able to submit the report on any case within the time fixed by court as the members of the PBI will not be engaged in any other activities except investigation of cases,” Wahidul Hoque Chowdhury, Additional Superintendent of Police, District Chief PBI, Chittagong, told The Independent.