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HC notice to Mumbai civic body for purchasing 12 ambulances at double price

The Bombay High Court today issued notice to Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) on a PIL alleging that the civic body had purchased cardiac ambulances at double the market price.

The notice was issued by a bench of Justices V M Kanade and P D Kode on a petition filed by Mehul Shantilal Katariya, a resident of suburban Kandivali.

On the basis of information sought under Right to Information Act, the petition alleged that the civic body has bought 12 ambulances at almost double the price offered by the established manufacturers in the country.

The PIL claimed that the corporation spent public money in buying cardiac ambulances at a cost of about Rs 60 lakh each as against the market price of Rs 21 lakh.

The petitioner argued that for cross-checking the genuinity and correctness and fairness of the cost of cardiac ambulances mentioned in the reply under RTI, he had sought quotation from Vishal Cardiac Air Ambulance Services. Vishal Cardiac and Air Ambulance Services provide ambulance services throughout India and International and is a pioneer in providing state-of-the-heart emergency ambulatory care maintained by highly trained professionals, he said.

On asking for a quotation of fully ready/loaded/ cardiac ambulance from Vishal Cardiac & Air Ambulance Service, this company submitted its quotation report in detail which included the cost of the ambulance, standard features which the ambulance will have, medical equipment etc alongwith its brochure and photographs, said the petitioner.

The petitioner said that after receiving such information, he was shocked to find the quotation given by the company for Rs 21,63,095 for advance cardiac ambulance as against the price of Rs 59,65,585.38 mentioned by the municipal corporation under RTI."

The PIL has sought action against the wrongdoers as it felt that public money had been wasted.

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