Police have asked for a block allocation of Tk1,226 crore in addition to their budget for the current fiscal year "to maintain poll-time security".
The fund will be spent on purchasing equipment and logistics to maintain law and order during the forthcoming national election, according to a recent letter by the Police Headquarters to the home ministry.
The shopping list includes arms and ammunition, riot gear, motor vehicles, information communication technology equipment, and computers and other accessories.
"If adequate riot gear and operational equipment are not collected, it would be difficult to ensure law and order before, during and after the upcoming national election," the letter noted.
"Besides, the personal safety of law enforcers deployed at the grassroots level will also be compromised," it added.
The home ministry forwarded the letter, signed by Additional Deputy Inspector General of Police (Finance and Budget) Md Atiqur Rahman, to the finance ministry.
Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan told The Business Standard, "This is routine police work. It has nothing to do with anything else."
The riot gear and operational equipment available to the police are inadequate to maintain law and order centring the next 12th national election, according to the police proposal.
"It is essential to allocate additional funds in the current fiscal year for the purchases in order to increase the capacity of the Bangladesh Police," it said.
As part of the government's austerity measures, the finance ministry has instructed that a maximum of 80% of the budget be allowed to be spent for fuel and energy bills in the current fiscal year.
But police have sought permission to spend 100% of the budget allocation for fuel. In its explanation, the Police Headquarters said fuel bills have increased as a rise in political programmes has led to a consequent rise in police mobility. Besides, promotion and posting of officers against newly created posts and an increase in the number of motor vehicles have contributed to the expenditure.
Citing the record rise in fuel prices, the Police Headquarters have asked for an additional allocation of Tk204.80 crore for fuel in the current fiscal year.
In the proposal, police sought Tk158 crore for the purchase of arms and ammunition, Tk226 crore for motor vehicles and Tk77.50 crore for safety equipment.
Besides, Tk540 crore has been sought for tools and equipment purchase, Tk12 crore for information communication and technology equipment, Tk7 crore for software and Tk44 lakh for computer and accessories.
Additional Deputy Inspector General of Police Atiqur Rahman said the department will purchase the items if the finance ministry approves the proposal.
"This is not something new as there were similar purchases before previous parliamentary elections," he told TBS.