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ROB works: Retired SR chief engineer faces CBI inquiry

The CBI, Madurai has listed D Sarangapani, former CE, as accused along with Rajkumar and Omega Construction, Coimbatore, represented by its managing partner C Kannan.

CHENNAI: A retired chief engineer of Southern Railway from Tiruchy is now being probed by the CBI for allegedly not following norms in awarding a contract for the construction of Road Over Bridges (ROB) with a contract value of Rs 38.97 cr.

The CBI, Madurai has listed D Sarangapani, former CE, as accused along with Rajkumar and Omega Construction, Coimbatore, represented by its managing partner C Kannan.

According to the CBI, four ROBs were constructed on a stretch between Tiruthuraipoondi and Agasthiyampalli in 2019. These were unmanned level crossings where the construction was initially proposed for elevated railroads, which were later converted to ROBs. In the run-up to decision making, Sarangapani had recommended that it would be ideal to construct ROB citing soil conditions.

As per railway norms, there should be public demand for ROB. The level crossings are eliminated generally on representation by various groups.

As per railway board instruction, the land required for construction should be in possession of the Railways, which must ascertain the feasibility and requirement of ROB by conducting a study of the traffic.

While construction of ROBs, the said norms were not followed and Rs 63.96 crore have been paid to the contractor which is above the contract value of Rs 38.97 cr. The CBI has registered a case under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act and IPC sections for criminal conspiracy and cheating.

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