After the initiative of replacing the existing streetlights with LED fittings came under scanner, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) chief has directed all the civic department and ward offices not to purchase any LED fitting on its own at their level as 70,000 fittings would be bought by electrical department and provided to each ward office.
“The civic chief has issued orders that no other civic department or ward office would purchase the LED fittings. The purchase should not be done separately and instead 70,000 LED fittings should be procured by the civic body and it has been made clear that any civic officer involved in separate purchase would face disciplinary action,” said Srikrishna Chaudhari, PMC Executive Engineer.
The PMC had undertaken a project to replace the existing streetlights with LED fittings to save power, he said, adding the civic body had already installed LED for around 50,000 streetlights. “There are a total of 1.25 lakh streetlights in the city and the efforts are to ensure all have LED fittings to save energy,” he said, adding the purchase of 70,000 LED fittings would be completed this financial year.
Each fitting costs at least Rs 10,000 and a total estimated expenditure for purchase of the LED fittings would be Rs 70 crore, Chaudhari said, adding, “The need for civic chief’s order was to avoid duplication of work on installing LED fittings as the ward offices also take it up on the demand of local corporators.”
The municipal commissioner’s direction would enable check on wastage of civic funds on additional purchase and can also enable the corporators to divert the budgetary allocations by them to be diverted for some other civic work. “There has been budgetary allocation made by many corporators to fit LED fittings for the streetlights in their respective electoral ward from the development funds. Thus, it is necessary that the ward offices implementing the budget should not execute it,” said Chaudhari.
Another civic officer said the civic chief’s orders hold importance as there were alleged discrepancies in the installation of LED fittings for streetlights.