All it did was propose a panel

 The inquiry into the fake bill scam, prepared by the Technical Vigilance Cell under Commissioner (TVCC), has many shortcomings.

In what appears to be a mere eyewash and an apparent attempt to dodge the Karnataka High Court, the inquiry report not only fails to ascertain the money squandered, but also says nothing about the perpetrators of the scam.

The report cites minor irregularities such as lapses in estimation, sanctioning and the tender process, but it does not speak about the poor quality of work. There is no mention of the quality-quantity variation in the report. Also, it is not clear in the inquiry report whether  bill payments were made systematically with reference to the Bill Register books or Fund Based Accounts System (FBAS).

The inquiry does not say a word on the Hundi system, which the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) had criticised in its recent report on the BBMP’s financial affairs.
Last year’s TVCC probe in three divisions of the BBMP unearthed financial irregularities to the tune of Rs 1,539 crore, but Palike engineers could not give a clear-cut picture in the report.

The total loss has not been touched upon. The engineers did not investigate cases, when payments were made and recorded in the Bill Register. If the payments had been tracked, the extent of the loss could have been assessed.

Verified

Quite shockingly, of 55,000 records in bill registers, approximately 27,000 records were verified and from it some random cases were picked up, says the report.Yet, only one case was mentioned as an example of checking FBAS, wherein different nomenclature was found.

Palike sources said the probe report does not discuss the duplication of works and bogus bill payments. The investigators did not verify same work code or job code accorded to more than two or three different works. A verification would have thrown light on bogus payments.

Another surprising aspect of the probe is that it recommends forming a committee of experts for a detailed probe. By making such recommendations, the three chief engineers and their team of engineers, right from the level of superintending engineers to assistant engineers, appeared to have questioned their own abilities.

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