5 months on, no action against 7 erring officials

  • Hillary Victor, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Mar 16, 2015 09:07 IST

Even after the assurance regarding action against seven engineers of the municipal corporation (MC), who were accused in the tender process for the operation and maintenance of the sewerage treatment plant at Diggian, SAS Nagar, in November last year, the case still pending with the authorities concerned.

The entire scam had caused a loss of Rs 4.5 crore to the exchequer. Interestingly, MC chief engineer Mukesh Anand had probed the fraud, but no report has come out yet.

During the inquiry, it was told that the MC would recover the entire amount from the Pune-based private firm, which has been maintaining the plant since 2007-08.

In November last year, HT through its series had highlighted that the public health department provided undue favours to the tune of Rs 75 lakh per year to the agency.

As per the terms and conditions of a detailed notice inviting tenders (DNIT), it was mentioned that the company would carry out disposal of sludge produced within the boundary of the STP, maintain the premises, and take care of supply of chemicals and reagents. However, the MC had floated tenders for the same works, thus causing a loss of Rs 4.5 crore in five years.

So, the defaulting engineers of the public health wing posted at the STP since 2007 till 2014 were violating terms and conditions of the contract.

When contacted, MC chief engineer Mukesh Anand said, "We will first recover the money from the agency, and then the action will be taken against erring officials who had initiated the process of purchasing chemicals, and floated the tenders that were not required. We will surely bring the culprits to the book."

On asking why the action has been delayed, he said, "We are working on it."According to sources, these erring officers, who at present are working with the civic body or have been repatriated to their parent state, will be chargesheeted soon. The decision regarding those who have been superannuated will be taken separately, the sources added.

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