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At a glance: Intelligence agencies of Bangladesh

  • Published at 11:12 am February 19th, 2019
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Despite some similarities, each of these intelligence organizations has specific duties

A number of domestic intelligence agencies, both state-owned and independent, operate in Bangladesh. 

Despite some similarities among the intelligence agencies, each of these organizations has specific duties.

Giving details, Assistant Inspector General (Media) of Police headquarters Md Sohel Rana said: 

“Each of the intelligence agencies operating under police jurisdiction carry out specific duties, and these units perform those duties as per orders.”

The Directorate General of Forces Intelligence (DGFI) and the National Security Intelligence (NSI) are among the most well-known intelligence agencies in the country. Both these organizations operate to gather intelligence and preserve national security.

DGFI and NSI

The DGFI’s primary duties revolve around gathering intelligence related to national defense and protecting the country’s sovereignty. Several other units work under the DGFI, such as the intelligence bureau and counterintelligence.

On the other hand, the NSI gathers and analyzes intelligence gathered from both domestic and foreign channels. The organization’s primary task is espionage.

SB and CID

According to sources from the police headquarters, the Special Branch (SB) is the main intelligence agency of Bangladesh Police. The largest and most active unit of the agency is City-SB.

City-SB focuses on gathering intelligence related to the capital city Dhaka, and recommending appropriate action based on intelligence analysis. Each district also has a specialized unit named D-SB, which operates under the district superintendent of police.

The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) is a specialized wing of the Bangladesh police. 

This unit gathers intelligence and investigates serious crimes, including sensational murders, terrorism, militancy, terror financing, money laundering and organized crime.

RAB

Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) is an elite anti-crime and anti-terrorism unit of the Bangladesh police, comprised of members from the police, the army, the navy, the air force and Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB).

This organization gathers intelligence and actively contributes in upholding law and order across the country. RAB also aids other law enforcing and intelligence agencies by providing them with intelligence reports.

The Detective and Criminal Intelligence Division is another intelligence arm of the police, focusing primarily on investigating large scale criminal activities.

CTTC

Another police unit, called the Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) operates with the sole purpose of curbing militancy and terrorism at home and abroad. Another police unit, named the anti-terrorism unit, was recently formed with that purpose. However, it has yet to begin operating at full capacity.

Responding to queries, Md Masudur Rahman, deputy commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s (DMP) Media and Public Relations Division, said: “Intelligence units operating under the jurisdiction of the DMP uphold the law, gather intelligence and take preventive measures to curb crimes.”

PBI

One of the major police intelligence units in Bangladesh is the Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI). This unit has an organizational structure similar to the United States government’s Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

The PBI investigates difficult cases that lack clear clues or motives.

The Naval Police, Tourist Police and Industrial Police, have their own intelligence units that work to ensure the security of waterways, tourist spots and industrial zones, respectively.