Kalmadi gets lucky on 'third' attempt

Mar 22, 2013, 09:57 IST | Vivek Sabnis

His proposal to set aside R1 crore for digging 100 borewells, to set up rainwater harvesting mechanism at three locations in the city, likely to get approval after being turned down twice � in 2009 and 2012

After a couple failed attempts to get a sanction for funds worth Rs 1 crore for digging borewells in the city in 2009 and 2012, luck seems to have favoured tainted city MP Suresh Kalmadi on his third try. 

His efforts are likely to bear fruits and get an approval for funds by the government machinery through the District Collector office.

If everything works out smoothly, then the PMC is likely to get the amount from the MP’s fund for digging 100 borewells in the city soon.

Kalmadi, who has been accused of causing ‘wrongful loss’ to the government amounting to Rs 95.61 crore during the 2010 Commonwealth Games in
New Delhi, also asked the collector to use the amount for installing rainwater harvesting mechanism at three places — PMC headquarters in Shivajinagar, Balgandharv Rangmandir and Yashwantrao Chavan Natyagruha.

Confirming the development, Deputy Engineer (Water Supply) Aniruddha Pavaskar, “On the basis that we might get the money from the MP fund, we have already completed the survey work with the help of Groundwater Surveys Development Agency (GSDA) and identified 73 spots on government-owned land. The remaining 27 borewells will be dug by the GSDA. The actual work will begin after floating tenders.”

D G More, deputy municipal commissioner for District Planning and Development Cell, said Kalmadi had submitted a letter five months ago, wherein it was mentioned that the collector had taken decision and ground water survey was done for PMC with the help of GSDA. 

“Everything is going as per procedure and borewells are likely to be dug in the next two months,” More said.

District Planning Officer and in-charge of MP and MLA funds for Pune district Mangala Ghode said, “He (Kalmadi) had sent us a letter on September 1, 2012, based on which we had forwarded the further procedure. Kalmadi has spent all his fund of Rs 5 crore on construction of roads, computers for government-aided schools and construction of cultural halls in slum areas. Digging borewells in the city was his suggestion, for which Rs 1 crore earmarked from the MP fund.”

She said it is the District Planning Committee that decides and finalises proposals made by elected representatives, including Kalmadi.

“We finalised his request for borewells after consulting the District Collector Vikas Deshmukh and approved the proposal. It is true that every year all the proposals from elected MPs or MLAs are not cleared,” Ghode said. 

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