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HindustanTimes Wed,20 Aug 2014

IT firm fails to deliver, PSPCL project in limbo

Vishal Rambani , Hindustan Times  Patiala, May 03, 2014
First Published: 10:49 IST(3/5/2014) | Last Updated: 10:53 IST(3/5/2014)

The Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) has ter minated the contract with infor mation technology (IT) company Spanco that failed to complete a Rs. 350-crore project awarded to it in 2010.

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The PSPCL was forced to take this decision, as its field offices remain flooded with consumer complaints of inflated power bills, blamed on the faulty, incomplete Spanco software. However, the delayed action has raised many questions against the PSPCL management, since the engineers and consumers had been reporting the faults since 2011.

HT had first reported the faulty tender procedure and the many “lifelines” the PSPCL had given to the company. Mumbai-based Spanco, chosen via a questionable re-tendering process over IT giants such as Infosys, HCL and Larson and Toubro, delivered a faulty billing and complaint-registration system to be implemented in 47 Punjab towns. The engineers opposed the faulty tender process though which Spanco bagged the contract. Initiated in 2010 and scheduled to be completed by 2013, the project has been rolled out in seven of the targeted 47 towns; and there, too, the service is deficient.

PSPCL TO TAKE OVER CONTROL

Asked to react, PSPCL director (distribution) KL Sharma said the board of directors had agreed to terminate the contract and the company would have to forfeit its bank guarantee.

On the remedial measures, he said the PSPCL had decided to take up the project in own hands and aske all technology partners of Spanco to deal directly with it. “The software won’t be implemented in other cities till it is bug-free,” he said.

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