THE MUMBAI Police Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the alleged scam in road repair work in the city arrested ten employees of two external audit agencies Thursday. The two third-party audit agencies had approved the slipshod repair work carried out on the city roads by contractors.
The police have seized documents to check if there was collusion of any other employees of the two agencies — SGS India Pvt Ltd and Indian Registrar of Shipping — who were assigned the task of checking the quality of work carried out by BMC contractors.
Mumbai Police spokesperson Ashok Dudhe said an FIR had been registered at the Azad Maidan police station by the civic body in the regard on April 24, naming six contractors and the two audit agencies as accused. “Based on the probe carried out by the SIT, they arrested a total of 10 employees of the two third-party audit agencies on Thursday,” he said, adding the team had also seized documents from the BMC to look for others who could be involved in the scam.
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Explaining the role of the 10 accused, mostly field officers, Dudhe said they did not point out the poor quality of road work done, which did not meet the terms and conditions laid down by the BMC, and instead gave a go-ahead. He said the probe was still under way and more arrests were likely.
The FIR lodged in April had been registered under sections 120 (A) (criminal conspiracy), 197 (producing false documents) and 420 (cheating) of the IPC on the complaint of Chief Engineer (Roads) Manohar Pawar. During the inspection of 14 roads from the island city, 11 in western suburbs and nine in the eastern suburbs, the BMC-appointed inquiry team found massive irregularities in the road repair and reconstruction work, as the foundation of the roads was not according to the standard and the quality of road work was shoddy, the FIR said, adding that the job done by contractors cost the civic body more than Rs 10 crore of public money.
Six contractors — KR Construction, J Kumar, RPS Infraprojects, RK Madhani, Mahavir Infraprojects and Relcon Infraprojects — and the two third-party auditors had been named in the FIR.