The entire Dhaka city is being brought under closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras for the safety of the city-dwellers of the capital. For this, the police headquarters is preparing a project proposal called ‘Development of Dhaka City Digital Monitoring System’ under the ‘Safe City Project’ proposed by the government.
Besides, the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) has taken another project to install CCTV cameras at 500 points in Dhaka South City before the Safe City project.
According to the concerned officials, a plan has been taken to cover the entire 6,000 km of small and big roads in Dhaka under a few thousand CCTV cameras through the Safe City project. The camera system will work to control militant and terrorist attacks, theft, snatching, robberies and murders, as well as to detect movement errors.
“CCTV cameras would be installed under the Safe City project to make Dhaka a safer city. Cameras will be installed at 500 points under our own management. We are working relentlessly for the safety of the city dwellers,” said Walid Hossain, deputy commissioner (public relations) of DMP.
The CCTV cameras currently seen in different parts of the capital are based on area, personal needs and the local police administration’s own initiative. There is no system to monitor them centrally in case of an emergency.
Earlier, area-based CCTV cameras were installed in Dhaka city but its benefits were not fully realized. The more cameras are installed, the safer the city will be, says law enforcement agencies.
According to multiple DMP sources, a few years ago, several police stations in Dhaka, including Dhanmondi, Tejgaon, Jatrabari and Uttara West, took the initiative to install area-based CCTV cameras. Later, the Law and Order Co-ordination Committee (LOCC) in Gulshan, Banani, Baridhara and Niketan installed 1,200 CCTV cameras in the area. They are being monitored by setting up a control room at Gulshan outpost.
On the other hand, a small number of traffic police CCTV cameras have been installed at the corners of some areas. Video lawsuits were filed against the vehicles with them. However, area-based activities were not successful except in Gulshan. Roadside cameras are now almost useless.
A deputy commissioner of DMP (Traffic) said many cameras would be installed through Safe City. “Not only crime observation, but also many features including traffic system will be added with the camera of that project,” he added.
According to the Public Relations Department at the police headquarters, the project will be sent to the Ministry of Home Affairs in the form of DPP by the police soon after the scrutinizing, even though it was delayed due to coronavirus outbreak in the country.
The cameras will be of advanced German technology which will use to identify criminals using the NIDs database through artificial intelligence. The ICT branch of the police headquarters would be given the responsibility to maintain the cameras.