The three sweeping machines bought from Italy in 2008 at the cost of `5.42 crore is proving to be a white elephant for the civic body as the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has spent `2.45 crore on its maintenance till date.
Residents allege that the machines are put to use only in VIP sectors and are never seen in the southern sectors of the city. Congress councillor Mukesh Bassi says that the machines are only functional in VIP sectors or when VIPs visit the city. He said: “I have never seen machines in the southern sectors. I feel they are not properly utilised due to their high maintenance cost.”
However, MC sanitary inspector Chandermohan claims that the machines work for eight hours a day and clean the roads in the entire city.
The civic body spends around `1 lakh every month on the maintenance of each machine. Besides, the MC has to release the salaries of drivers and purchase fuel for the machines. Of the `2.45 crore that the MC has spent till date, over `90 lakh has been spent on the purchase of spare parts and `1.54 crore on the comprehensive annual maintenance contract for the three machines.