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HindustanTimes Fri,26 Dec 2014

Chandigarh

CITCO's laxity to blame for assault on petrol pump staff
Vinod Kumar, Hindustan Times
Chandigarh, April 27, 2013
First Published: 09:35 IST(27/4/2013)
Last Updated: 09:36 IST(27/4/2013)

It is the laxity and shoddy functioning of the Chandigarh Industrial and Tourism Development Corporation (CITCO) that has cost dear to two of its security guards deployed at a Sector-56 petrol pump, who were injured in a bloody assault and one of them was admitted to hospital in critical condition.


The brutal assault could have been averted or at least the case could have been cracked had the authorities got closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras installed at the petrol pump for which it had awarded tender to a private company four months ago.

On the intervening night of April 20 and 21, security guards -- Chander Shekhar Mishra and Surinder Pal Singh Rana -- were beaten up with batons by eight unidentified assailants.

According to an official order dated December 28, 2012, CITCO had awarded tender to city-based private agency to install 22 CCTV cameras at three petrol pumps - Sector 9, Sector 56 and Sector 38 (West) -- besides at Hotel Shivalikview and Baithak in stipulated time period.

However, CITCO slipped into slumber after that and failed to follow up the work and did not install even one CCTV camera at three petrol pumps and two hotels. Ironically, CITCO finally woke up to the need of getting CCTV cameras but it was on April 24, two days after the assault.

The CITCO management had allotted the work to Online Communication for Rs. 8.62 lakh with a time limit of 90 days starting from January 1, 2013. The sub-divisional engineer (SDE) (E-II) was given the responsibility of monitoring the work to ensure that the task is completed in a stipulated period.

When the cameras were not installed even after a month, CITCO managing director DK Tiwari on February 5 had directed the officer concerned to get the same installed. Even the directions from the top official of the corporation could not get the work executed.

A senior official, on request of anonymity, said the sequence of events narrates the sorry state of affairs in the corporation.

EXPLANATION SOUGHT FROM XEN
Taking serious note of delay and the assault case, the CITO MD has written to its XEN for failing to get the job done in stipulated time. The erring official has been asked to explain the reasons for the delay. When contacted, XEN Shiv Kumar refused to comment. Despite repeated attempts, the managing director was not available for comment.

POLICE SENT REPEATED REMINDERS
In the past few months, the local police had written to CITCO on more than three occasions for installing CCTV cameras after a couple of incidents were reported at CITCO petrol pumps.

“We had approached CITCO in the past to get cameras installed, but in vain,” said SHO, Sector-39 police station, inspector Charanjt Singh Virk.

With non-availability of CCTV footage, police are still groping in dark and have failed to establish the identity of the accused involved in assault on the petrol pump staff.

Virk said police are struggling to get clues. Had the CCTV camera been installed, it would have been of great help in cracking the case, said the SHO.


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