BHUBANESWAR: The State Government has been violating the Standard Bidding Document (SBD) issued by Central Government while awarding civil construction tenders for the past 10 years. Besides, a Data Book, which was circulated by the Centre in order to fix and regulate pricing of contracts, is also kept abeyance by the State Government, said All Odisha Contractors’ Association (AOCA) president Pravat Dash.
Taking a dig at the Government, AOCA president alleged that the administration has showed undue favour to a particular private firm and even modified the tendering system so that it suits the company’s credentials. In the process, the contract of 14 buildings in medical colleges across the State were clubbed, raising the bidding value to Rs 490 crore. These contracts were subsequently awarded to the aforesaid firm, Dash said.
In a similar manner, at least 26 lift irrigation projects in Balangir district were grouped and the tender price shot up to Rs 800 crore. “There is no dearth of expertise among State-based contractors but the pre-requisite of a huge turnover prevents us from bidding for a contract. This system of packaging contracts to raise the bidding value has been intentionally done by the State Government to benefit a particular private firm,” Dash said.
Besides, the company has been awarded a contract at a rate of Rs 3400 per square feet whereas the same nature of work carried out by a local contractor will fetch Rs 1000 or Rs 1100 per square feet, AOCA members said.
Five buildings in Capital Hospital and Sishu Bhavan have been awarded for Rs 4500 crore which was another example of the Government’s apathy towards Odia contractors. “Even as Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is the Minister for Works, our repeated appeals to the Government to adopt SBD and Data Book have fallen on deaf ears,” AOCA vice-president Anil Kumar Mahalik said.
The association alleged that there is a big scam in the tendering process of these contracts which has landed in the kitty of a particular firm. AOCA demanded a CBI probe into the matter and threatened to take to the streets if the Government does not address their grievances.