The Pimpri-Chinchwad Shiv Sena has alleged serious irregularities in purchase of ‘odo fresh’ - a compound spread on garbage to reduce foul odour - for Rs 25 lakh by the environment engineering department of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC).
In a letter submitted to Municipal Commissioner Shrikar Pardeshi, the Sena alleged that there was manipulation in tender process as one company with three names bid for the contract. “There was no competitive bidding. The same company quoted different rates for the same product,” said Sena corporator Seema Savle based on an RTI reply received from the PCMC.
Savle said only 150 litres of ‘odo fresh’ was required for the Moshi garbage depot but the civic body purchased 1,275 litres. “This means, the civic body has incurred a loss of nearly Rs 17 lakh,” said Savle.
Savle said two companies who bid for the contract are in partnership. “Some of their directors are also same. One of the companies was not eligible to take part in the bidding process as it was set up a year ago. However, it was allowed to do so. One company which was a labour contractor firm was allowed to participate under the guise of a chemical supplier,” said Savle.
She said it was made to believe there was competitive bidding. “Actually, no bidding took place. Besides, the plan was to purchase 240 litres of the product but 1,275 litres was purchased,” she added.
“One product, one contractor and three different rates..this is what has come to light through RTI. This was done either without civic chief’s knowledge or he glossed over them,” she said.
Interestingly, the allegation made by Sena against civic administration are the same that were levelled by the Municipal Commissioner against PCMC health chief Dr Anand Jagdale. In his department enquiry order, Pardeshi had stated that Dr
Jagdale had recommended purchase of a costly machine that was not required. “Besides, there was no competitive bidding,” he had alleged.
At a press conference on Monday, Sena leader Sarang Kamtekar, said, “Municipal Commissioner is the final authority to approve the proposal. Similar was the case in Dr Jagdale’s case. Now, will the Municipal Commissioner take action against his administration and himself ?.”
Denying allegations, PCMC executive engineer Sanjay Kulkarni, said, “I have not received any complaint from Sena. We have not purchased the product in bulk as has been alleged.”
He, however, conceded that the final authority in approving the plan is the commissioner and the standing committee. PCMC officials said since the Municipal Commissioner was in Mumbai for a meeting with the Chief Minister, he will look into matter after he returns.
After second threat letter, PCMC chief’s security stepped up
The police have stepped up security for Municipal Commissioner Shrikar Pardeshi following a second “threat letter” was received by the civic body last week. The first letter threatening to harm Pardeshi was received by PCMC in June. Deputy Commissioner of Police (Zone III) Shahaji Umap on Monday said they have provided round-the-clock security to the Municipal Commissioner both at his residence and at the civic headquarters. “The number of security guards have been increased from two to four,” he said. Pardeshi id under fire from citizens whose illegal structures built after March 31, 2012 are being demolished by his administration. “There is feeling that we are carrying the drive on our own. But the fact is that we are implementing the directives of the High Court,” he said.