The ministry of home affairs (MHA) official Ravinder Singh’s arrest has hit Rs 8,500 crore to Rs 9,000 crore worth of shipping projects. At least 12 major projects are unlikely to see the light of day, at least this fiscal year.
Around 12 projects out of the 21 earmarked for 2010-11 are still awaiting security clearances from the MHA, sources said.
“Tenders can be opened only after getting security clearance. Resultantly our projects won't begin during this fiscal,” a shipping ministry source said.
Singh was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation in November for allegedly leaking “inside” information. Singh is said to have been sitting over these files awaiting security clearances. “Now, things are quite uncertain over getting clearances for these 12 projects worth R8,500-9,000 crore, as it was with Singh earlier,” the source said.
The 12 projects in limbo includes a R6,700-crore mega container terminal at Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust.
The 21 projects worth around R13,000 crore under the public-private partnership model comprise construction of multi-purpose berths, oil jetties, mega container terminals and docks.
The ministry had set a target for beginning construction of these projects during the current fiscal year, which now seems to be a far-reaching goal. “As per our plans, these 21 projects along with the ongoing ones would add 282 million MT to the existing 616 million MT capacity in major ports as on March 2012,” an official said.