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Modify tender norms for road repair works: NGO Arappor Iyakkam
As the Greater Chennai Corporation has decided to repair 1,010 roads at a cost of Rs 147 crore, Arappor Iyakkam, an anti-graft organisation has urged the civic body to modify tender conditions to ensure wider competition
In a representation to Gagandeep Singh Bedi, Chennai Corporation Commissioner, Jayaram Venkatesan, convenor of the organization, pointed out that in the conditions for all tenders, 40 percent work experience is sought as a single work over the past five years.
“For example, to call tender for Rs 1 crore work one must have an experience of Rs 40 lakh in a single tender. However, most of the tenders over the last eight years have been handed over only to a syndicate of contractors in collusion with senior officials and a former minister. Therefore, it must be understood that only the same syndicate of select contractors will be having such an experience,” he explained.
He suggested that the civic body modify work experience condition of 40 percent in multiple works rather than single work. Instead of seeking such an experience over the last five years alone, this may be expanded to 12 years, the representation demanded.
“The tender document does not lay out the penalty for poor road work. Clauses for a three-year defect liability period alone are not enough. When the quality of roads does not meet the required standards, there needs to be a clause for taking action against contractors including that of recovery of taxpayers’ money and blacklisting of the contractors,” the representation added.
He also pointed out that one of the tenders is for relaying Nelson Manickam Road. “This road was included in the October 2019 tender and actually laid in 2020. Therefore, it is well within the three-year defect liability period and the previous contractor should relay the damaged portion at his cost as per the tender conditions,” he said.