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Chandigarh guest house renovations: Facing flak, administration cancels Rs 1.6-cr tenders

The issue was also raised during the Chandigarh municipal corporation House meeting on Monday. Even as mayor Davesh Moudgil said it had nothing to do with the MC, former mayor Arun Sood accused UT officers of excessive spending and violation of norms.

punjab Updated: Mar 27, 2018 11:16 IST
Hillary Victor 
Hillary Victor 
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Chandigarh guest house renovation,Chandigarh,Chandigarh administration
Former mayor Arun Sood raising the issue in the MC House on Monday. (Anil Dayal/HT)

Facing criticism from all quarters for spending Rs 1.62 crore on renovating nine suites at the UT Guest House for governors’ conference in May, the UT engineering department has cancelled the tenders.

Hindustan Times had reported how the UT administration despite reeling under fund crunch was splurging on the two-day event to be attended by 26 state governors besides the President, Vice-President and Prime Minister.It was also reported how the UT engineering department flouted tender norms.Though the conference is to be held at Haryana Raj Bhawan, the governors are to stay at the UT Guest House, built in 1970.

The issue was also raised during the Chandigarh municipal corporation House meeting on Monday. Even as mayor Davesh Moudgil said it had nothing to do with the MC, former mayor Arun Sood accused UT officers of excessive spending and violation of norms.

‘Negative publicity’

Confirming the development, a senior officer of the engineering department, who did not wish to be named, said the work tenders have been cancelled because of the “negative publicity”.

He said the renovation of suites will be carried out after three months. “Meanwhile, the contractor who is carrying out repair works in some of the rooms will be asked to do minor repairs in the nine suites as well,” said the officer.

The tenders were floated to renovate rooms, which included installing floor tiles and change of furniture.

According to the public works manual, work of same nature cannot be split and at least 10 days have to be given for publicity of a tender amounting to Rs 20 lakh to Rs 2 crore. But the UT engineering department floated one of the tenders on March 16 and opened it on March 21, while another tender of the same work was floated on March 17 and opened on March 23. The department also specified the make of tiles and taps in the tenders.

The governors’ conference, which is usually held at Rashtrapati Bhawan, Delhi, has been shifted to Chandigarh after PM Modi expressed his desire to hold the event in the city. The UT even demolished the boundary wall of the guest house with the Punjab and Haryana Raj Bhawans for the event.

First Published: Mar 27, 2018 11:16 IST