In a statement, Jayaram Venkatesan, convenor of Arappor Iyakkam, pointed out that in an earlier petition to the government, he had revealed the names of two firms to whom the tenders have been allegedly fixed even before the bids were opened. “On November 18, much before the opening of the tenders, Arappor Iyakkam had sent an email complaint to secretaries of Highways and Finance departments mentioning how two tenders worth Rs 656 crore and Rs 494 crore have been pre-fixed. We have now found that the exact same companies have won the tenders,” the statement said. The organisation urged the State government to cancel the AB-CRISM tenders immediately and initiate departmental as well as criminal action against the officials and firms involved in the fixing of tenders.
Based on an earlier complaint by the NGO, the State government had cancelled Rs 1,165 crore tender named Thanjavur performance-based maintenance contract (PBMC). The complaint highlighted fixing of tender and also that good roads were selected for relaying and maintenance.
“However, the Highways Department floated the same Thanjavur PBMC tender by splitting the tender into two with tender values of Rs 655 crore and Rs 493 crore. We have reliably learnt that the current tenders have also been pre-fixed to specific people. The name has been changed to Area-Based Comprehensive Road Improvements, Strengthening and Maintenance (AB-CRISM),” Jayaram Venkatesan had alleged recently.
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