‘Give road contracts to the competent’
MUMBAI: Accepting suggestions on how to improve the state of Mumbai's roads, the Bombay High Court on Friday said there was a consensus that contracts for construction, repairs and maintenance of roads must be awarded on the basis of competence and qualification of a contractor and not merely to the lowest bidder.
The court said heavy penalty must be imposed for delays in projects and firms who do defective work must be blacklisted.
The court said that at present, there is no mechanism (for awarding contracts on the basis of competence), but there needs to be one.
A bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah and Justice M S Sanklecha was hearing a suo motu public interest litigation on the pathetic potholed condition of the city's roads.
Various agencies had been called by the court to give their views and suggestions in the matter.
The Public Works Department gave a presentation of its plans to improve the condition of roads.
Presenting a more concrete roadmap, BMC counsel Milind Sathe said awarding of contracts should be performance-based. Additional municipal commissioner S V R Srinivas said the civic body has plans to start a comprehensive traffic mobility scheme for the city (see box). "A study would be launched soon,'' he said, to bring in greater uniformity in policy. A unified Metropolitan Transportation Authority has been formed, but it lacks legislative teeth, a lacuna which state advocate general Darius Khambata said he would push the government to fill.
Khambata said, "Contractors who perform well must be awarded and those who do defective work, blacklisted."
The CJ said, "Yes, why should awards not go to the most competent contractor and not merely to a lowest eligible bidder?"
The hearing was at the court's conference room as many stakeholders including lawyers, citizens and experts were being represented.
Advocate Prateek Sekseria, appearing for a bunch of advocates residing in the western suburbs whose daily commute on Western Express Highway turns into a nightmare, pointed out to a crater on a suburban flyover. "The blame game should stop and agencies must fix the underlying issue of poor quality work."
The HC adjourned the matter for further hearing to November 22
articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com › CollectionsSep 30, 2011 - MUMBAI: The BMC's standing committee on Thursday passed the Rs 577-crore roads contract and awarded it to nine contractors, eight of ... Construction Company, which has also been awarded roads contracts in the past.
www.mumbaimirror.com › MumbaiFeb 26, 2013 - The biggest contract, worth Rs 181 crore, goes to a firm that was ... the standing committee awarded road construction and repair contracts ...
www.projectstoday.com/.../BMC-awards-road-contracts-in-MaharashtraThe Standing Committee of BMC awarded road construction and repair contracts worth around Rs 620 crore to various companies in Maharashtra.