TRIPURAINFO

Tripura government's E-tendering process falls flat on loopholes and corruption, Mafias reign supreme as before

By Our Correspondent

Agartala February 22,2019 : Tripura government's efforts to maintain transparency in government work under PWD, DWS , PHE, HB and other departments are falling apart because of a major defect in the process which still allows mafia elements to seize and snatch documents from bona fide E-tenderers and negotiate works , as before, at much higher cost to the state government. As a result , all bona fide contractors including quality of works are suffering with massive cost escalation.

Sources among leading bona fide contractors said that towards the end of  the previous left front regime, the system of E-tendering had been introduced for works worth Rs 1 crore and above but  the new BJP-IPFT government had nominally introduced full-fledged E-tendering process , keeping loopholes in the process which is benefiting the mafia elements. Explaining the problem sources said that as per rules the bona fide competing contractors are required to deposit tender cost, Earnest Money Deposit (EMD) and 1% deposited call (D-call) while filling up the tender form online . "The major trouble is that after completing the initial formalities online , the contractors are required to hand over hard copies of forms of tender cost, D-call and signed page on downloaded acknowledgement numbers ; it is where the bona fide contractors are attacked by non-contractor mafia elements and their original papers are seized an snatched to prevent actual submission of original papers" said sources that 'unfortunately this scam has been going for a long time'.

Holding the localized 'Mandal' committee office bearers responsible for capitalizing on the loopholes , sources said that already massive trouble has already taken place in Kamalpur, Santir Bazar, Bishalgarh, Teliamura, Kumar Ghat, Battala MIFC department  and Sabroom. 'In many cases tender boxes containing the tender cost, EMD and D-call have been broken and even taken away, defeating the process and purpose of E-tendering and ultimately the government loses because when works are negotiated by mafia elements the cost escalates and the government or department charged with  execution of work have to spend more' said sources.

This has created a virual anarchic situation which can be corrected only by making the entire process of tendering confined online, experienced contractors said , citing the procedures followed by ONGC, CPWD and Railways. In many cases engineers in league with mafia elements subvert the process from within by leaking out sensitive information and data. 'Unless the entire tendering process is made fully online in all respects with measures to prevent malpractices this half-baked process will continue to create trouble ; the system of submitting hard copies physically will have to be done away with' said sources among senior contractors.

 

   (Tripurainfo)

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