The Chandigarh Municipal Corporation’s new expenditure focus is protective equipment for COVID-19 now.
The civic body is all set to purchase PPE kits, gloves, masks and all other equipment again for an amount of Rs 2.82 crore. The agenda will come up for discussion in the general house meeting scheduled for Friday through video conferencing.
The Indian Express had earlier reported how two wings of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation had spent on same simple pieces of safety equipment, or ‘relief operations’ in their parlance, for Covid-19.
While the medical officer of health wing purchased ‘relief operations’ worth Rs 45 lakh, the engineering wing had purchased material for control of Covid-19 at an estimated cost of Rs 53.46 lakh along with Rs 29.91 lakh on “works taken up specifically for containment of COVID”.
Sources had said that while the amounts vary, the items remained the same. In the new list of purchase, tenders have been placed for purchase of 20,000 PPE kits worth Rs 2.10 crore. In this, 34 companies have participated and are under technical evaluation.
Sanitizers worth Rs 46.80 lakh have also been ordered. Of this, around 30,000 bottles of sanitizers of 500 ML have been ordered amounting to Rs 45 lakh and 6,000 bottles of 100 ML sanitizer bottles worth Rs 1.80 lakh too have been ordered.
Ten companies have participated for this too and they are under technical evaluation. Various types of gloves and masks have been ordered. As per details, N95 masks (about 3,200 in quantity) have been ordered for Rs 16.56 lakh.
Other than this, three-layer medical masks for Rs 2.10 lakh have also been ordered. Gloves worth Rs 6.40 lakh and binding tape worth Rs 20,000 have also been ordered. For this, seven companies have participated in the tender and they are also under technical evaluation.
A committee has been constituted for this which includes chief accounts officer, medical officer of health, law officer and two executive engineers. In the committee’s meeting held on May 8, it was discussed that supply order of 4,000 PPE kits, 20 tons of sodium hypochloride solution has already been placed.
Congress councillor and leader of opposition Devinder Singh Babla said that they will first ask the specifications of the protective equipment they have ordered.
“We will make sure that genuine stuff comes in and there is no scope of any holes in it. We will ask them the specification they have ordered,” he said.
In the previous Finance and Contract Committee meeting, Medical Officer of Health Amrit Warring said that they took post facto approval of purchase of ‘relief operations’ worth Rs 45 lakh which included masks, gloves and sanitizers.
The Opposition had also raised questions saying that funds should be spent carefully as the amount was really high.
The corporation has already taken approval to spend Rs 41 lakh on just disposing of the waste collected from quarantined houses.
This was discussed at a meeting of the Finance and Contract Committee comprising councillors and officials held earlier this month.
Officials of the civic body had said that they will “scientifically dispose of the waste at Industrial Area phase I”.
Linking the system in councillors’ laptops.
As the meeting will be held through video conferencing for the first time, the corporation sent its employees to the houses of all the councillors, officers and nominated councillors to link the system.
Sources said that the staff struggled the whole day to link the system with which video conferencing will be held. There were problems of low audio which was being looked into.
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