Under fire for the sorry state of roads in the city, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) once again attempted to woo major infrastructure companies for building roads.
On Monday, the civic administration held a meeting with more than 10 reputable companies to discuss issues that restrict them from participating in the bidding process.
This time, the administration is hopeful that bigger companies will show interest.
For a while now, there have been suggestions that the civic body involve reputable infrastructure firms to rebuild the city’s roads instead of giving crores of rupees to contractors who have been cheating taxpayers with the poor quality of roads.
In fact, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan, too, had asked the civic body to resort to a similar solution.
But, apart from practical problems associated with taking such a step, the contractor-politicians-bureaucrats nexus has also been making it difficult for top civic officials to follow these suggestions.
“These infra companies were worried about restoration of roads and pointed out problems such as trenching and issues posed by storm water drains. Since they are also concerned about their reputation, they want a stricter plan to resolve these issues,” said SVR Srinivas, additional municipal commissioner, BMC, adding that once these problems were sorted, the companies would participate.
Representatives from companies such as L&T, Gammon, HCC, Simplex, among others were a part of the meeting.
“We will try to formulate a plan taking into account the issues that have been raised by these companies. In the meeting, we also shared details about our financial status, so that any financial concerns were also addressed,” said Srinivas.
N Salvi, a former civic road engineer said, “It does not matter if small or big contractors are making roads. Unless the road work by contractors is supervised and specifications are adhered to, there will be no solution to bad roads.”