Rs 352-crore scam: Sanction sought to prosecute road engineers, BMC officials

Police officers said their probe revealed a nexus between civic engineers and contractors implicated in the scam.

Written by Vishwas Waghmode | Mumbai | Published:September 21, 2016 1:14 am

In a major development in the Rs 352-crore scam in road repair contracts handed out by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation, the Mumbai Police has sought sanction to prosecute road engineers and officials from the civic body for alleged involvement in the case.

Police officers said their probe revealed a nexus between civic engineers and contractors implicated in the scam. “So we need the prosecution sanction from the civic body to proceed further. As per the procedure, we have written to BMC seeking the same,” said a police officer, who is part of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) set up to probe the scam.

The officer added that a sanction from competent authorities is required for prosecuting a government servant as per sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act. Manoj Kumar Sharma, deputy commissioner of police (zone 1), was unavailable for comment.

Following an inquiry into contracts for 34 roads, the BMC had registered an FIR with the police, which set up a
Special Investigation Team to probe the Rs 352-crore scam.

The civic body had named six contractors and two third-party auditors — SGS and IRS — in the FIR. The contractors are RPS Infraprojects, KR Construction, Jay Kumar, Relcon Infraprojects, RK Madhani and Mahavir Infrastructure.

The inquiry revealed the “complete failure of administrative machinery” from tendering to carrying out the road work.

“On an average, there have been 53 per cent irregularities in road work. In certain cases, it revealed that irregularities range from 38 per cent to 100 per cent,” said the report.

So far, police has arrested 26 people, including three senior officials and a contractor in connection with the road scam.

Two chief engineers, Ashok Pawar, (of roads department) and Uday Murudkar (Vigilance), were arrested for their failure to keep proper checks and supervise the work.

Senior officials in the BMC confirmed they have received a letter from the SIT. “The legal department has been asked to look into it. The law officers will submit their report with remarks in the next couple of days. Then, the municipal commissioner will take a call on whether to grant the sanction,” said the official requesting anonymity.