Transport dept gets an earful from CAG
It was not just the Bus Rapid Transport corridor that drew criticism from the Comptroller and Auditor General, the transport department's efforts to computerise its functioning also came under fire.
The government's decision to charge Rs 370 for smart cards during registration of vehicles also drew flak.
"As per Central Motor Vehicles Rules 1989, the maximum fee chargeable for smart cards is Rs 200. The department levied an additional fee of Rs 170 as it intended to include additional information on smart cards which was to be collected from various bodies - police, excise and other state zonal offices. However, the department could not collect these additional information and no procedure for capturing and storing additional information were established either," said the report.
The report went on to observe that STIL - the firm hired to prepare the smart cards -- issued 18,00,29 cards against new vehicle registrations and collected an extra amount of Rs 30.61 crore.
The CAG said though the department planned to computerise operations like issue of licences online, it lacked a proper IT plan that led to the non-implementation of applications like SARATHI for driving licences.
The report also stated that the department failed to integrate the databases of commercial vehicles. The databases for autorickshaws, vehicle inspections and taxies and heavy vehicles are all kept separately.
The report said contractual clauses show undue benefits to STIL. The smart cards issued also did not have any holograms or serial numbers that made their verification impossible.
Apart from this, the department, which issued these cards to introduce a paperless work culture, continued to use files when it came to references for a vehicle's registration details.
A spread of lip-smacking food was laid out for Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann's wedding function in Chandigarh. A food menu of the function, obtained by news agency ANI, showed that guests at the wedding were served the best of Indian cuisine including Karahi Paneer, Tandoori Kulche, Dal Makhani, Navratan Biryani, Mausami Subzian. They also got to devour some Italian dishes including the Lasagna Siciliano. This is Bhagwant Mann's second marriage.
A communal clash that broke out in Karnataka's Kerur was due to 'personal issues' between the two sides, chief minister Basavaraj Bommai said on Thursday, a day after violence erupted in the town over alleged eve-teasing. The situation in Kerur continues to be peaceful but tense, and a total of 18 people – from both the Hindu and Muslim communities – have been arrested. Overall, at least four people were injured in the clashes.
In a tragic incident, three people working in a chowmein factory in Gajapati district of Odisha died of asphyxiation on Wednesday night after they went to sleep while keeping the chowmein dryer machine turned on. Police officials in Gajapati said the three workers in the chowmein factory at Narayan Nagar of Mohana area had gone to sleep after putting the soggy chowmein noodles to dry in the chowmein dryer machine.
The Hebbal flyover in Bengaluru - known for its traffic congestion - has finally been picked up by city authorities, who have come out with a fresh set of rules. The advisory was announced by the Bangalore Traffic Police. The same goes for vehicles coming from KR Puram, Road and Tumakuru Road. Vehicles traveling on the airport road flyover can join the Hebbal flyover as usual.
Looking dapper in a mustard kurta-pyjama and Nehru jacket with a matching golden yellow turban, Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann was all smiles as Aam Aadmi Party leaders Arvind Kejriwal and MP Raghav Chadha arrived to attend his wedding to Dr Gurpreet Kaur at a private ceremony at his official residence in Chandigarh on Thursday morning. A van carrying Guru Granth Sahib arrived around 10am amid tight security around the chief minister's residence.