CAG finds money going down the drain

CAG finds money going down the drain

From diverting funds meant for storm- water drain (SWD) projects to not implementing them in line with the prescribed rules, the CAG report released here on Thursday finds several problems with the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP).

The BBMP was implementing 15 packages under four SWD projects at Koramangala, Challagahatta, Hebbal and Vrishbhavathi valley besides remodelling primary and secondary SWDs.

Out of the 15 packages, work orders were issued in three packages even before administrative and technical sanction for the estimates by the competent authorities were awarded.

In another instance, the notice inviting tenders was closed 15 days prior to the last date of receipt of tender forms, restricting competition, and participation of tenders for the bid.
In this manner, only two or three tenders were received for almost all the packages.

The report notes that the sources for mobilisation of funds by the Palike was not distinctly brought out in Detailed Project Report (DPR) as a result BBMP fell short by Rs 165.77 crore.

BBMP also sought exemption from tendering to complete emergency works which were to be executed within a specified time frame.
However, D J Bhadra, Principal Accountant General (General and Social Sector Audit) said: 

“It was clear that there was no emergency as the works were after the end of the emergency period.” Works, he pointed out, were completed after a delay of two years.

The report noted that the BBMP was allowed to negotiate with the lowest bidder when the tender rates were too high. In one instance, the Palike was found to have negotiated and agreed for a rate of Rs 190 per cubic metre for earth work excavation, when the quoted rate was only Rs 49 per cubic metre.

“This item, package II of Koramangala, alone constituted extra payment of Rs 2.26-crore,” the report said, adding that there were many other instances.