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Pre-Monsoon Desilting: Ample scope for manipulations as MBMC opts for clock-based pricing

Video shooting, surprise visits, real time monitoring, before and after work photographs in place to check quality and transparent billing claims MBMC

Suresh Golani | Updated on: Friday, April 29, 2022, 05:55 PM IST

Pre-Monsoon Desilting: Ample scope for manipulations as MBMC opts for clock-based pricing  |
Pre-Monsoon Desilting: Ample scope for manipulations as MBMC opts for clock-based pricing |
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After a delay of nearly 25 days, the pre-monsoon desilting operations finally took off in the twin-city of Mira-Bhayandar from Sunday. While budgetary allocations amounting Rs. 3.5 crore have been made for the purpose, tender contracts estimated to be worth Rs. 3 crore have been awarded to private companies for manual and mechanical excavation with JCB, Boat-Poclain and Hydraulic Earth Moving Machines for desilting work across the six zonal divisions in the twin-city.

Private agencies have also been roped in for the provision of suction pumps to de-water chronic flooding spots in the region. Instead of setting up accountability compulsions, the Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC) has awarded hourly and shift based tender contracts.

“Ample scope has been provided for the contractors to exploit loopholes in the clock-based pricing structure to continue with their routine money minting exercise. Moreover, the workers are forced to desilt sans adequate safety gear posing a threat to their lives,” said social activist Pradeep Jangam.

When contacted deputy civic chief Ravi Pawar, he said, “Adequate measures to keep a check on the work to prevent any type of manipulations in the hiring process. Apart from real-time video shooting of on-duty labour and in-action machines, photographs of before and after work completion are mandatory components to be submitted with the bills along with manual logbook records Dedicated teams have been deputed for surprise visits at the ward level. Despite provision, a large section of the workforce prefers to work sans safety gear.”

There are around 155 major and minor nullahs in the twin-city which measure up to more than 240 km. May 30 is the deadline for the completion of the desilting work. There is some disbelief at the MBMC’s claims that the work of desilting drains will be completed well in time for the monsoon.

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Published on: Friday, April 29, 2022, 05:55 PM IST