Government Under Fire Over Mumbai's Cement Concrete Road Project; Legislative Council Demands Accountability

Government Under Fire Over Mumbai's Cement Concrete Road Project; Legislative Council Demands Accountability

Shiv Sena UBT MLC Anil Parab voiced frustration at the government's failure to take action despite repeated assurances, calling for action against those involved in corruption and project delays.

RUCHA KANOLKARUpdated: Wednesday, July 10, 2024, 11:01 PM IST
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BJP MLC Prasad Lad |

Mumbai: The Maharashtra Legislative Council was abuzz with intense discussions on Wednesday, during the Monsoon Session, as BJP MLC Prasad Lad brought forward an attention motion regarding the state of Mumbai's cement and concrete roads. Over the past few years, the city has faced severe water logging during monsoon seasons, disrupting daily life for its residents. In 2022, the Mahayuti Government had pledged to convert all city roads to cement concrete to mitigate this issue. However, opposition members criticized the government for failing to deliver on this promise, with even ruling party MLCs highlighting the problem.

BJP MLC Prasad Lad raised an attention motion, demanding clarity on the status of the project and questioning whether the contractor had been blacklisted. He noted that even 20 percent of the work in the first phase remains incomplete.

Clarifying that there were no irregularities in the tendering process for the first phase of road concreting works in Mumbai, Minister-in-charge Uday Samant dismissed the allegations. During the question hour in the Legislative Council on Wednesday, BJP's Prasad Lad raised a starry question regarding knowing the facts in this regard. During the debate on this question, Leader of the Opposition Ambadas Danve alleged that there was a scam in the tender process and demanded an inquiry into it.

Uday Samant informed, "Due to the unsatisfactory progress of the work and non-compliance of the terms and conditions of the tender, the contract of the company, Roadways Solution Limited, which has been awarded the contract for this concreting work, has been canceled and the company has been blacklisted and penal action has also been taken. At times there was a verbal spat between the opposition and the ruling members."

Industry Minister Uday Samant responded, assuring the council that the government has covered 208 roads and taken action against late contractors. "We have taken away the work from Roadway Solutions India Company. Mega Engineering and other companies that did not start work on time were not blacklisted but were fined."

Expressing his disappointment, NCP (Sharad Pawar faction) MLC Shashikant Shinde remarked, "It is unfortunate if the works inaugurated by the PM are not completed. If these contractors are not the government's sons-in-law, take action. Other works have been assigned to companies blacklisted by the Mumbai Municipal Corporation."

Shiv Sena UBT MLC Sachin Ahir praised Lad for bringing the issue to light, saying it highlighted how contractors are being pampered. "This question shows how a contractor is pampered, Congratulations to Prasad Lad for bringing this issue forward. Was the roadways work given in the municipal region? Who owns the company and when will the work be completed?"

Samant clarified that the company is owned by Navjit Gadke and has not been given any municipal work.

Shiv Sena UBT MLC Anil Parab voiced frustration at the government's failure to take action despite repeated assurances, calling for action against those involved in corruption and project delays. "Deputy speaker madam, you are constantly given this assurance but it is not fulfilled. They are insulting you too. They have not taken action even after being told four times. What we should expect from these ministers. There is huge corruption in cement concrete roads in Mumbai. It is a mega scam in the tendering process. This contractor has taken the tender by giving false documents, strict action should be taken against him. Additionally the road inaugurated by the Prime Minister is not yet complete, how do we trust these ministers"

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