More than two months have passed since the issue of inferior quality saris being given to conservancy staff of the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) came to light, yet no action has been taken against the contractors. It was revealed that a total of 13,500 saris are gathering dust at the store department of the PMC for the last two months.
In the month of May, the staff members complained that the uniforms given to them were of an inferior quality and the PMC officials had ordered to stop distribution of the same. They had even floated a new tender and the inferior quality saris were to be returned to the contractor.
The store department had conducted an inquiry and the report of the same was sent to Rajendra Jagtap, deputy commissioner last month.
“PMC received 31,000 saris from the contractor of which 18,500 have been distributed to conservancy staff. But 13,500 saris are still with the store department. They have not taken any action against the contractor and have not returned the saris,” said Sandeep Khardekar, an RTI activist.
The PMC distributes uniforms to its conservancy staff every two years. For the year 2012-13 more around 35,000 saris were ordered from the private contractor. Tenders were floated and the lowest bidder, Poonam Dresses and Tailoring firm was selected by the standing committee.
When the contractor completed the order in the month of May, it was revealed that inferior quality material was used to make the garment.
According to the tender, the price of a sari was fixed at Rs 490, while the rate of a blouse piece to be given to the PMC was fixed at Rs 43. However, the civic officials found out that the actual price at which the contractor bought each sari was Rs 410, and a blouse piece for Rs 35.
Shriniwas Kandul, head of the store department said, “We have informed the contractor to take back all the saris which he had supplied. But he is not ready to do that. We are going to charge fine and blacklist the contractor.”
Khardekar said, “I don’t understand why PMC officials are taking unnecessary time. They are intentionally taking time and hiding the contractor. They want to utilise inferior saris by showing it as new.”
Rajendra Jagtap, deputy commissioner, PMC said, “We have ordered to start fresh tendering process. These saris will not be distributed. We have informed contractors to take back all the order.”
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