Dispute between partners delays city’s CCTV project
The city’s hope of increasing vigilance and escalating the level of surveillance by setting up of close circuit television (CCTV) camera network has come to a halt.mumbai Updated: Aug 03, 2012 01:31 IST
The city’s hope of increasing vigilance and escalating the level of surveillance by setting up of close circuit television (CCTV) camera network has come to a halt.
More than three years after the 26/11 terror attacks, the CCTV surveillance plan, a major recommendation in the Ram Pradhan committee report, is still to be implemented.
The Rs800 crore plan consisting of installing 6,000 CCTV cameras (14 on every sqkm), has come to a halt following a dispute between partners in the consortium, which was awarded the project.
According to a senior home department official, the consortium, including ADSL, DWPL, MTNL, externally supported by Reliance Industries, were found eligible to implement the project. The second bidder consortium had given Rs16,000 crore bid for the same job, which the department thought was not justified.
“But later following a dispute between the partners and the project was stopped. A committee formed under the chief secretary reviewed the situation and forwarded a 20-page report to the advocate general (AG) for a legal view. But the AG has asked the consortium to give their reply by August 5 before a final decision is taken,” the official said. Sources from the consortium said that they were looking at the nitty-gritties and would be responding to the government, as this was a sensitive issue. MTNL is yet to commit a figure for the scope of the work.
In a recent state security council meeting, chief minister Prithviraj Chavan told the members that the plan was derailed because of a ‘technical glitch’ and that it would be back on track soon.
“It is sad that the government is taking such issues so lightly. We have raised the issue of installation of CCTVs several times, but every time they have some excuse,” said Eknath Khadse, Bharatiya Janata Party leader of the opposition in the legislature.
City on high alert in wake of festivals
The high alert sounded by the Mumbai police following the bomb blasts in Pune will continue in view of a series of festivals that lie ahead along with Independence day celebrations. Spokesperson for the Mumbai police, Nisar Tamboli told HT: “We are also enforcing sudden nakabandis at various places to arrest criminals in various parts of the city.”