The state government has handed over the construction of two large dams, which will cost hundreds of crores of the taxpayers’ money, to a firm that did not have a valid registration nor the financial and technical capabilities required to undertake the projects, HT has found.
Documents indicate an official-contractor nexus as FA Enterprises bagged the contract worth Rs488 crore (it has escalated to Rs 1,220 crore) to build Balganga dam in 2009 and Kalu dam worth Rs 421 crore in May 2010, though it did not have the mandatory certificate from the Registrar of Firms, Mahara-shtra. Only firms with this certificate qualify to bag contracts for public projects.
RB Joshi and Co, chartered accountants for FA Enterprises, sent a letter only on August 11, 2010, (a copy is available with HT) to the Registrar of Firms, Maharashtra, requesting that its client be registered urgently.
That’s not all. Flouting its own norms, the Konkan Irrigation Development Corporation allo-wed both FA Enterprises and its parent firm, FA Constructions, to compete for the same tenders. They share the same address and have three common promoters. To qualify, FA Enterprises said it had built Gadnadi dam in 2001, before it was even set up. FA Constructions showed the same project experience.
Despite repeated calls and email, FA Constructions did not respond to our queries. The Kalu dam in Thane and Balganga dam in Raigad are expected to provide drinking water to Mumbai Metropolitan Region.