Justice S Baskaran, who passed interim orders on the petitions moved by KM Mustafa, a railway catering contractor, said in his order: “Considering the facts and circumstances, the IRCTC is directed to proceed with the tender process but restrained to pass final orders by accepting any of the tenders till June 12, 2018.”
According to the petitioner, based on IRCTC inviting tenders for setting up food plazas at 24 railway stations all over India, he had submitted a couple of tenders.
But though he was the highest bidder for two stalls, quoting Rs 5.27 crore and Rs 2.33 crore respectively, the bid was decided in favour of Anjali Hotels Private Limited, a Kochi, Kerala-based firm which had quoted a mere Rs 3.51 crore, while the second one was decided in favour of Adyar Ananda Bhavan, which had quoted just Rs 2.16 crore.
Noting that he had received a message through e mail that he was disqualified despite quoting a higher bid than both the bidders citing lack of eligibility, he said despite the two parties quoting lesser than the amount quoted by him, the corporation, for reasons best known to it, disqualified him and was issuing letter of approval to them.
The petitioner’s counsel argued that the move of approving lowest bidders was bound to cause heavy loss to the IRCTC and sought to quash the disqualification letter sent and consequently direct the corporation to grant licence to the petitioner.