Will look into World Bank report,says Joshi

Minister of Road Transport and Highways C P Joshi said he would look into the World Bank report that has highlighted “fraudulent and corrupt” practices by private contractors working on national highway projects funded by it

Written by ENS Economic Bureau | New Delhi | Published: April 4, 2012 1:51:22 am

Minister of Road Transport and Highways C P Joshi on Tuesday said he would look into the World Bank report that has highlighted “fraudulent and corrupt” practices by private contractors working on national highway projects funded by it.

“The report has been sent to the National Highway Authority of India (NHAI) for ascertaining facts in the matter after which appropriate action will be taken. As soon as the facts are ascertained,the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways would send a report about the facts as well as action taken to the Department of Economic Affairs,” Joshi said.

The World Bank’s Institutional Integrity Unit has reported that contractors paid bribes and gifts to influence consultants and officials of the NHAI. The contractors in question are Progressive Construction Ltd (PCL) and PCL-MVR JV working on the Lucknow-Muzzaffarpur National Highway Project,for which the World Bank has provided $620 million. The project’s deadline is June 2012.

Two other projects — the Grand Trunk Road Improvement Project and the Third National Highway Project — were also under the World Bank’s scanner. These two have been completed.

The World Bank had sent the report to the Finance Ministry seeking formal investigation into the matter. The report was then forwarded to the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways.

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