After facing strong criticism, corporator withdraws 7 tenders

Sangita Gaikwad was attempting to acquire seven mercantile spaces in Aundh area on a five-year lease for herself and her entire family

After advancing as many as seven tenders in the names of all her family members to gain possession of as many commercial units in an industrial complex built by Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) in Aundh area on five-year lease, corporator Sangita Gaikwad has been forced to back out.

For a social cause! Former Pune mayor Dattatray Gaikwad

Following her withdrawal, rather than giving these tenders to the next bidder, the standing committee has decided to reinitiate the whole process for these seven tenders.

When PMC had issued advertisements, it was expected that no corporator or official would take part in the tendering process on moral grounds. However, Gaikwad not only filed a tender in her own name, she also advanced another six in the names of her husband and former mayor Dattatray Gaikwad, her son and daughter.

Following fierce condemnation from sections of media and society, Gaikwad finally withdrew all the tenders. Now questions are being raised as to how concerned departments and officials of PMC admitted seven tenders from the same family and that too of a sitting corporator.

Despite persistent probing, the Pune Municipal Corporation standing committee chairman Vishal Tambe has not cleared his stand on the issue.

“As Gaikwad has told the standing committee that she wants to take back all the seven tenders, we have decided to start a process of fresh tendering for these specific proposals,” he said.

Meanwhile, former mayor Dattatray Gaikwad attempted to provide an explanation on this controversial matter. “We have filled seven tenders, as we have to open an office and also provide shop spaces to self-help groups. Our motive was purely social and not commercial,” he said.

Interestingly when PMC set monthly rental for these shops as between Rs 30,000 and 35,000, according to position of these shops, the Gaikwad family submitted the tenders with the highest price, quoting as much as twice the price for possessing some shops.

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