The cabinet committee on national purchase at a meeting on Wednesday approved procurement of 30,000 shotguns and 30,00,000 cartridges on emergency basis for Ansar and Village Defence Party ahead of the national polls scheduled to be held in December.
Finance minister AMA Muhith presided over the meeting at the secretariat where the committee approved the proposal from the public security division of the ministry of home affairs to implement the procurement without any tender for avoiding delay in the run of the next general polls.
Bangladesh Machine Tools Factory Ltd, a state owned limited company under the management of Bangladesh Army, has been selected to supply the arms and ammunitions at a cost Tk 147 crore, said additional secretary of the cabinet division Mustafizur Rahman.
The arms and ammunitions would be outsourced from Italy, the UK and Turkey, he said, adding that Tk 109 crore would be required for the shotguns and rest TK 38 crore for ammunitions.
According to the proposal of the public security division, members of Ansar play vital role in maintaining law and order and poll time duty.
But most of their arms from by the government are old, said the proposal.
The proposal said it is imperative to purchase arms and ammunitions for the Ansar without any delay for successful holding of the next general election. The proposal also said that the procurement plan should be exempted from the public procurement act to avoid lengthy procedure of floating tender and complete the procurement.
Mustafizur Rahman said the purchase committee also approved procurement of 75,000 tonne fertiliser in three lots at a cost of Tk 297.61 crore. Out of the three, the industry ministry sought retrospective effect for one consignment of 25,000 tonne fertiliser.
He also said 990 poles for the rural electrification board would be procured at a cost of Tk 419.84 crore and would be supplied by four suppliers.