POST TIME: 26 February, 2020 08:37:54 AM
New police unit to provide nat’l emergency service

New police unit to provide nat’l emergency service

After three years of providing emergency service to 70 lakh people, the police department is going to set up a ‘National Emergency Service 999 Unit’ soon. At least 1,923 personnel would be recruited from the police department, fire service and civil defence, and the health directorate on deputation, sources at the police headquarters said.

An additional inspector general of police would head the "National Emergency Service 999 Unit" for ensuring emergency services to people across the country, the sources added.

For smooth functioning of the new unit under the supervision of the police headquarters, the Public Security Division of the home ministry is going to prepare a National Emergency Service 999 policy.

To prepare a new policy on the matter, the home ministry has called an inter-ministerial meeting, with home minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal in the chair, today (Wednesday).

Additional DIG of Police Mohammad Tabarak Ullah, who is in charge of the national emergency helpline, told The Independent that they are planning to set up more 450 work stations across the country to provide emergency service quickly.

“There are only 100 workstations with 450 police personnel working in them. We will need at least 2,000 personnel to operate the emergency service in future as complaints are increasing day by day. We have sent a proposal to the home ministry to strengthen the activities of the National Emergency Service 999 by recruiting the required manpower. At present, our people are receiving at least 20,000 phone calls everyday. On the basis of importance of the help-seekers, our people are providing assistance,” he said.

He also said they have received at least two crore phone calls till date and provided assistance to at least 70 lakh help-seekers.

Sources at the police headquarters said the authorities have allocated land to set up the infrastructure for the ‘National Emergency Service 999 Unit’.

Sources in the home ministry said an inter-ministerial meeting would be held to finalise the policy of the proposed National Emergency Service 999.

Under the draft policy, anybody can seek police assistance, ambulance service, and rescue operation dialling the hotline 999 or phone app by sending voice message, video call, or SMS.

The Prime Minister’s Adviser on ICT affairs, Sajeeb Wazed, had inaugurated the toll-free 999 emergency helpline to get help from the police, fire service, and ambulance on December 12, 2017. Anyone can avail of the toll-free 999 service at zero-balance of his/her mobile phone.