Mumbai: After recently ousting a contractor from the ambitious project of building cement concrete (CC) roads, the BMC has now invited tenders worth approx ₹1,362 crore for constructing new CC paths and repairing existing ones collectively measuring 71 km. The work will also involve strengthening various CC passages and side strips across Mumbai. The time frame for submission of tenders is 21 days and the BMC will reveal the eligible bidders on December 28.
However, the move has not gone down well with corporators. Shooting off a letter to the civic chief on the 'issue', BJP Corporator from Colaba Makrand Narwekar said, “Looking at current tender conditions and timelines, I don't see any possibility of getting the CC roadworks completed in south Mumbai before monsoon arrival. So, the only solution is to split this mega tender into small ward-wise ones to expedite the project.”
As per the tender, the civic body will hold 20% of the contractor's money as bank guarantee for 10 years. Every year, 2% of the money will be released to the contractor. This arrangement will help to ensure road quality. Notably in the latest tender, ₹129 crore more has been allocated as compared to the last year's tender worth ₹1,233 crore. Talking to The Free Press Journal, Additional Municipal Commissioner (Projects) P Velrasu said, “There is no escalation in the estimated cost. The current tender is as per the schedule of rates, 2023, while the earlier one was based on index projection rates. This has led to a difference in costs.”
Last month, the BMC cancelled the work order allotted to Roadway Solution India Infra Ltd over alleged delay in the project, and even slapped a whopping ₹50 crore fine. The contractor had moved the Bombay High Court and the hearing has been scheduled in January.