The function of the highway police has not been made effective even after eight months of its launching to combat highway crime.
In a visit to different areas of the city Saturday it was found that most members of the highway police force were either passing their time idly or sleeping inside their cars.
When asked Syed Shazaman Raj, Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Highway Police Department, said it would be fully operational within the next one to two months.
"We have no equipment and cars. We have no Table of Organisational Equipment (TONE), speed detectors and speed analysers," Raj said.
The ministry of Home Affairs assured the department that it would supply all the required equipment to make the Highway Police fully operational within next few months.
Raj said the highway police department gave its cars to the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) at the time of inauguration of the department.
Now the highway police use only the jeeps, not the cars having the labels of 'Highway Police', he said.
"We have requested the DMP authorities several times to erase the 'Highway Police' labels from the cars, but the DMP did not pay heed to our appeal," Raj said.
The highway police are patrolling the highways in jeeps, Raj claimed.
"I can't tell you right now the number of highway crimes that have been foiled since the inauguration of the department," he said.
He said the government is importing some valuable equipment from Finland for the Highway Police Department.
Prime Minister Khaleda Zia launched the highway police unit June 11 last year aiming to make the country's 22,379-km highways safe.
The newly formed unit of the Police Department has created 72 outposts, each covering a distance of 60-km.
Twenty-four of these outposts have been proposed for upgradation to full-fledged police stations, but the proposal has not yet been approved, they said.
The police unit, manned by 2,042 personnel and equipped with 20 patrol jeeps, 59 cars and 150 motorcycles, was created for overseeing traffic management, ensuring safety of and maintaining discipline at bus and truck terminals, filling stations, toll plazas, passenger sheds and parking lots on the regional and national highways.
The highway police was formed against the backdrop of 22,032 accidents and 5,95,697 crime incidents on the roads that occurred during the period between 2000 and 2005.