Following several reprimands from the Bombay high court, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), on Wednesday, finally withdrew its tender notice inviting bids for the beautification and maintenance of gardens and other recreational spaces.
The judges had been irked to find that BMC had issued a tender notice for work worth Rs 96 crore without specifying which gardens and which recreational spaces the bidders were supposed to beautify and maintain.
BMC counsel Anil Sakhare sought permission of the division bench of justice DK Deshmukh and justice RG Ketkar to withdraw the notice issued last month.
“We are withdrawing the tender notice,” the senior lawyer told the court and sought liberty to allow the BMC to issue a fresh notice. The court allowed the request with the rider that details of gardens and recreational spaces are incorporated in it.
“We are allowing you to issue a fresh tender notice, but you should specify the gardens in the new notice,” the judges reminded Sakhare. The civic body also faced a lot of flak for issuing advertisements after misinterpreting court orders and attributing reasons to the high court for the delay in issuing tenders when there were no such court orders.
The issue was brought to the notice of the court through a petition filed by a group of contractors who got contracts for beautification and maintenance of gardens. They challenged the BMC’s decision to issue a fresh advertisement calling for tenders for the beautification of public gardens and others areas, in all 24 wards – two years before the scheduled expiry of their term.
On July 11, the high court stayed issuance of work orders, but the BMC issued advertisement in newspapers saying the high court had stayed the tender process.