Former chief secretary M Gopal Reddy
Former chief secretary M Gopal Reddy
File photo

Bhopal: The government has begun to tighten the noose around former chief secretary M Gopal Reddy in whose tenure conditions of seven tenders were changed. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has already tightened the screws on Reddy. The state government has also handed over the cases concerned with him to the Economic Offences Wing (EOW).

Advance payments were made to contractors by changing the payment schedule of seven tenders. The role of then engineer-in-chief Rajeev Suklikar and chief engineer (procurement) Shirish Misra has come to light. In a departmental inquiry, the officials of the water resources department (WRD) came to know that both the officers had changed the conditions of the tenders without the government’s permission.

Both of them gave replies to the notices issued by WRD officials that the conditions had been changed only after verbal orders of the additional chief secretary. If both of them give similar replies to the EOW officials, the probe agency may crack down on Reddy after that.

A sum of Rs 877 crore was advanced to the contractors against the seven tenders worth Rs 3,333 crore. The contractors have, however, completed as much amount of work against as much money that was advanced to them. This has happened to four projects. There are three tenders against which work is yet to begin. According to sources in the EOW, the agency is yet to receive a letter from the government.

Sources further said the agency would decide whether an FIR would be registered or not only after getting the letter. As the WRD has inquired into the case on its own and sent a report to the EOW, an FIR can be registered against Reddy.

Mantena Constructions has a project

Mantena Constructions Limited is dealing with one of the seven projects. The owner of the company is in jail because of his involvement in the e-tender scam. Besides Mantena Constructions, two projects are with Tata Projects Limited, two are with Karan Development Services Private Limited, one with SN Pandey Constructions and one is with LCC Projects Private Limited.

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