Police are pressing for promotion of 495 officials of the ranks of superintendent of police to additional inspector general ahead of the national elections.
As no post is vacant in the department's top tier, the police headquarters has come up with an in-situ solution, the British-era formula for promotion in the administration cadre.
An in-situ official is someone who continues to hold the same office and perform the same duties even after being elevated to a higher position.
The police headquarters sent a proposal to the home ministry on July 4, stating that “competent officials” have been serving in the same positions for a long time as suitable posts were not created at the upper level of police.
In the proposal, the headquarters used the words “supernumerary promotion” instead of in-situ promotions, which are given to admin cadre officials to ease commotion among officials serving without promotion for long.
“The government will need an additional Tk 4,98,480 a month [for implementing it],” reads the proposal.
The police demand followed a series of promotions in the administration, which has long been limping with a huge number of in-situ officials and OSDs (officers on special duty).
As of 2016, there were 416 additional secretaries against 120 posts, 908 joint secretaries against 350 posts and 1,301 deputy secretaries against 830 posts. And most of them are in-situ officials. The situation remains unchanged.
Days after sending the proposal, police high-ups had a meeting with Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan, who in principle agreed that the demand is logical, according to officials in the police and the ministry.
The ministry formed a seven-member committee headed by an additional secretary on July 12 to assess the proposal and find out ways and means to meet the demand. The committee is yet to submit its report.
Talking to this newspaper on Wednesday, Senior Assistant Secretary of the home ministry Kamrul Ahsan Talukder, also a member of the committee, said, “A decision will come soon after the Public Security Division secretary returns from a foreign trip.”
According to the proposal, the police headquarters wants that 11 additional IGs be promoted to grade-I, 42 additional IGs to grade-II, 46 deputy inspectors general (DIGs) to grade-III, 83 additional DIGs to grade-IV and 313 SPs to grade-V.
“The proportionate shortage of posts in higher positions [of police] compared to other cadres is a big obstacle to ensuring enthusiasm for work, morale, dignity, discipline and dynamism in the force,” the proposal mentioned.
In August, four additional IGs were promoted to grade-I on supernumerary basis.
Now the IG is a grade-I official holding the rank of a senior secretary while the public security division secretary at the home ministry holds the rank of a secretary. Many of the admin officials are unhappy about it, according to sources in the administration.
Eleven officials of 1984 and 1985 BCS batches have been in the police for over 30 years, but they are yet to be promoted to grade-I.
Besides, 42 DIGs, who joined the police after passing the 1991, 1989 and 1985 BCS examinations, have spent 27-30 years in the service, but they are yet to be promoted to grade-II, mentions the proposal.
This correspondent talked to a number of police officials who have been waiting for promotions for long. They said if their demand is not met before the upcoming polls, their promotions would be delayed further.
“Around 14 years have gone by since I joined the police. But I am still serving as an additional SP. In the past, it took seven to 10 years for an official to get promoted to the post of SP,” said an official of the 24th BCS batch seeking anonymity.
He also said 91 of the 205 officials, who joined the police with him as ASP in 2005, are yet to get promotion.
Another official said, “It [promotion] has become an issue of prestige for me as I have been serving as an additional SP for a long time.”
“If I get promoted to the rank of SP on supernumerary basis, at least I will be able to introduce myself as an SP,” added the official.