Mumbai: Tainted BMC contractors not yet blacklisted, continue to repair roads
Road contractors facing FIRs (First Information Report) for undertaking substandard work and allegedly cheating the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC), will continue to repair city roads and also be involved in new work in other state departments for at least two more months
Road contractors facing FIRs (First Information Report) for undertaking substandard work and allegedly cheating the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC), will continue to repair city roads and also be involved in new work in other state departments for at least two more months. The delay in receiving replies to show-cause notices sent to six tainted companies has left the civic body with no choice but to extend the dates for blacklisting these contractors.
This year in May, a preliminary inquiry report of 34 roads revealed that six contractors — KR Construction, J Kumar, RPS Infraprojects, RK Madhani, Mahavir Infraprojects and Relcon Infraprojects — had carried out sub-standard road repair work across the city between 2012 and 2015.
A senior civic official from the road department said, “After show-cause notices issued by us to contractors, they were supposed to file a reply in a month’s time. However, instead of filing a reply, they challenged it and demanded that we provide documents on the basis of which they were indicted. This took a lot of time and finally, after going through documents and the probe report, contractors have started filing replies last month.”
The official added, “As per the law of natural justice now, we have to hold a hearing for charges labeled against them. This process will take at least two months, after which we can blacklist them.”
Speaking to mid-day, Laxaman Vhatkar, Director (Engineering Services) BMC, who is looking into the matter, said, “After the hearings are completed, the BMC will issue final notice with the details of blacklisting.” Activists are furious with the civic body’s delay. “The BMC is deliberately delaying the whole process and providing back-door help to contractors. They can easily participate and work in other municipal corporations and states,” says activist Nikhil Desai from Matunga.
Contractor J Kumar has bagged a contract worth `50 crore for Metro 3 work, and RPS Infrapojects has got contracts worth `34 crore for road repair in Nagpur. These six contractors are currently doing repair work of more than `1,000 crore across the city.
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