Updated: October 29, 2021 9:46:52 am
BJP councillor Shakti Devshali has accused Chandigarh Municipal Corporation (MC) officials of intentionally delaying the process of re-tendering for mechanised road sweeping, so that M/S Lion Services may continue the work even after its contract expires next month.
Interestingly, in November, the code of conduct will come into effect and no fresh tenders can be floated.
“It is all planned. The officials were aware that the contract is expiring in November but they didn’t take it up before and intentionally delayed it so it can be extended. Extension in Rs 16.5 crore is not a small amount,” said Devshali, calling the whole thing a “scam”.
The agenda of extension will be taken up at a House meeting Friday.
Lion had submitted its consent on March 23 to extend the said contract period for another three years on existing rates. Accordingly, a committee under the chairmanship of Joint CMC was constituted by the commissioner, MCC and its recommendations. The committee unanimously resolved that the contract period of Lion should not be extended and be allotted afresh.
Accordingly, an agenda was placed in 297th meeting of General House of the MCC on May 31. The House had resolved that the process of re-tendering be initiated for GIS-based mechanical and manual sweeping of selected roads in Chandigarh. A committee was also constituted later.
“Two meetings of the committee have been held and the matter is under consideration. The present contract for manual sweeping is going to expire on November 30 and mechanical sweeping is going to expire on February 14, 2022. The draft RFP is still not ready and unlikely to materialise by end of November i.e. expiry of manual sweeping contract. Sanitation being a continuous process cannot be stopped even for a few days and moreover, the ‘Swacch Survekshan 2022’, is due in early February,” it stated.
The statement further said: “An agenda is placed before the General House for its consideration and approval to extend the existing contract of the company upto the close of financial year 2021-2022 i.e. to extend the manual sweeping contract from December 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022 (four months), and mechanical sweeping with effect from February 15, 2022, to March 31, 2022 (one month and 14 days), so that in future the contract for manual and mechanical sweeping be awarded/started simultaneously. The tentative expenditure for extension of manual and mechanical sweeping contract will be Rs 16.50 crore.”
Rs 2.4 crore ‘relaxation’ to parking contractors ‘because of Covid’
Even though the rush has resumed in parking lots, Chandigarh civic body is mulling giving a ‘relaxation’ of Rs 2.4 crore to the two parking contractors — citing Covid as the reason.
The General House has been asked for “remission in license fee due to lockdown during second Covid (wave) amounting to Rs 1,17,24,458 and on the points i.e. unusable parking space at various paid parkings of Zone-l area used by smart bikes and area used by MC officials and closure of multiplex cinemas may be/may not be allowed to Ram Sundar Prasad Singh Zone-1). Remission in license fee due to lockdown during second wave amounting to Rs 1,23,75,032 and on the points i.e. unusable parking space at various paid parkings of Zone-l area used by smart bikes and area used by MC officials and closure of Sukhna Lake on weekends may be/may not be allowed to M/s Pashchatya Entertainment Pvt Ltd (Zone II).”
The MCC has allotted 89 paid parking areas in Zone & Zone Il on license fee basis through two e-tenders to Ram Sundar Prasad Singh (Zone-1) and M/s Pashchatya Entertainment PL (Zone-ll).
“Various requests were received from both licensees to waive the license fee due to lockdown during second Covid wave and not getting full possession of some sites for providing free parking to MC officials, closure of Sukhna Lake on weekends, parking area occupied by smart bikes, closure of multiplexes, cinemas etc. In this regard, a meeting of the committee constituted for settlement of issue/grievances of paid parking areas allotted to the licensees of Zone I & Zone Il was held September 16…,” it was stated.
The executive engineers of both zones have submitted the reports regarding remission in license fee due to lockdown during the second Covid wave.
Policy for dhobi ghats
The municipal corporation will be taking up finalising a policy for dhobi ghats in Chandigarh. There are seven dhobi ghats under the civic body, in sectors 7 15, 19, 20, 22, 27 and 32.
For framing a policy regarding generation of revenue, an agenda item was placed in a House meeting held on January 30, 2019, which is reproduced as under Rs 50,000 per month will be charged as rent from each dhobi ghat, which will increase by 10 per cent per year.
It was stated that the premises will not be used for residential purpose, and if it is, Rs 5,000 per calendar month will be charged for each residence and no temporary or concrete structure can be erected by pressman in the dhobi ghats.
The matter has been placed before the General House for consideration and finalisation of policy for allotment of dhobi ghats to various dhobi pressmen associations/registered Dhobis etc.
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