Uttarakhand to impose ban on UP Rajkiya Nirman Nigam over inefficiency, graft
The Uttarakhand government will soon impose a blanket ban on Uttar Pradesh Rajkiya Nirman Nigam (UPRNN) legally debarring the corporation from taking up any construction work in the state owing to “its substandard work and complaints of corruption against it”Updated: Apr 28, 2017 20:43 IST
The Uttarakhand government will soon impose a blanket ban on Uttar Pradesh Rajkiya Nirman Nigam (UPRNN) legally debarring the corporation from taking up any construction work in the state owing to “its substandard work and complaints of corruption against it”.
“A probe ordered by the UP government is already on against the UPRNN. But we are going to debar it from taking up any works in our state irrespective of whether it gets indicted or comes clean on the charges facing it,” state parliamentary affairs minister Prakash Pant told HT on Friday.
He said a process was already on to impose a blanket ban on UPRNN. “In fact, in that connection, a proposal would soon be put up before the state cabinet for its approval.”
Pant accused the erstwhile Congress government of assigning all big ticket contracts relating to building constructions to UPRNN at the cost of the state owned construction agencies.
“From the way such contracts were awarded to UPRNN by them (Congress government), it is clear that both sides were involved in corruption,” he alleged, adding that the massive graft resulted in the Congress’ debacle in the assembly election.
The Congress, however, hit back alleging that the previous BJP government began the process of awarding building contracts to UPRNN.
“Those who continued with that process are now sitting in the lap of the ruling BJP and the latter should ask them why they continued awarding contracts to UPRNN,” Congress leader Surendra Kumar alleged while naming former Congress chief minister Vijay Bahuguna who joined the BJP in the wake of political crisis that gripped the state in 2016.
He claimed that Harish Rawat, who replaced Bahuguna as chief minister, set up a local construction agency--Uttarakhand infrastructure Development Corporation (UIDC) “so that it could be awarded all contracts” relating to all types of construction works.
“Obviously, the process of setting up UIDC did take time and pending that (process) we (Harish Rawat government) awarded contracts to UPRNN. It was only natural because UIDS had not taken shape by then,” Kumar said.
Pant stuck to his guns saying the Congress government awarded contracts to UPRNN in brazen violation of the state procurement rules.
“These (rules) clearly stipulate transparent legal processes of inviting bids and awarding contracts, which were not adhered to by the Congress government,” he alleged, adding the “rules it (Congress government) flouted had serious repercussions.
“First, all our state construction agencies remained deprived of the centage charges (commission) that went to UPRNN, which rendered the former without work, therefore, weak and ineffective,” Pant said, referring to five agencies.
They are Uttarakhand Infrastructure Development Corporation (UIDC), the construction unit of Jal Nigam, the Public Works Department (PWD), Irrigation and Rural Engineering Service (RES).
He alleged UPRNN was assigned “all big ticket contracts” relating to construction of buildings for medical and engineering colleges, sports colleges and stadiums etc.
“Besides, UPRNN charged unusually hefty fee from the government for construction of buildings,” Pant further alleged. “Yet, the quality of buildings it constructed was not only abysmally below par but most of the works it took up are still incomplete.”
The erstwhile BJP government, therefore, in its 2010 order asked UPRNN to finish all its works and wind up its operations in the state by 31 March 2011.
“However, owing to some pressing reasons the deadline had to be extended till 31 March 2012,” Pant said.
“The Congress government that took over subsequently, instead of finishing the contract with UPRNN continued to assign it all big ticket construction works,” he alleged.
First Published: Apr 28, 2017 20:43 IST