NCP alleges scam in civic body's tab distribution scheme

Mumbai: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) today alleged there was a scam worth "hundreds of crores" in the distribution of tablets to students in civic-run schools in the metropolis and asked the Municipal Commissioner to order an inquiry immediately.

If the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) Commissioner fails to order an inquiry into the alleged scam, the party will approach courts, an NCP leader said.

"The BMC Commissioner should launch an immediate inquiry into the corruption worth hundreds of crores that has taken place in the distribution of tablets to schoolchildren," NCP Mumbai chief Sachin Ahir said here.

"If an inquiry is not initiated, we will approach the Courts in this regard," said Ahir, who is also a legislator.

"The civic body had decided to distribute Videocon tabs (touchscreen-operated computers) to students. But, the tabs given to them are of a company called 'Bold' that is not even registered.

"These tabs are priced at Rs 2,500 apiece, while BMC bought them for Rs 4,800 a unit. About 21,000 such tabs have been distributed in BMC-run schools till now," he said.

The NCP leader said the BMC Education Department claimed tabs were procured from a company named 'Techno Electronics' but the latter has stated it has not sold such devices to the corporation.

"The software in the tabs is of no use and their battery does not last for more than two hours. It is of no use to students," Ahir said.

Shiv Sena, the main ruling party in BMC, has initiated a campaign to provide tablet PCs to students of Classes 8, 9 and 10. The entire study material of these Classes can be accessed from the tablets.

Despited repeated attempts, Trishna Vishwasrao, Sena Corporator and Leader of House in the BMC, remained available for comments on the charges made by Ahir.

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