VIJAYAWADA: Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Friday said the expert committee constituted to look into “irregularities” and suggest steps to ensure transparency in the tendering process of Polavaram irrigation project would submit its report in 15 days.
He also said the panel, which has already studied a couple of aspects of the project, found that at least 15 to 20 per cent of Rs 6,500 crore spent on it could have been saved.
“Of Rs 6,500 crore worth works done so far, the expert committee found that Rs 1,500 crore could have been saved,’’ Jagan said during the Question Hour in the Assembly when the Opposition raised the issue as to whether the State government was planning to hand over the Polavaram project to the Centre. Not satisfied with the reply given by Water Resources Minister P Anil Kumar Yadav, TDP members sought clarification.
Jagan explained that the project works could not be resumed for the next four months as the previous government took up construction of the cofferdam without completing the spillway works. “With rains expected in the next few months, the works cannot be taken up till November. If only we can start works by November, water from the project can be supplied by June 2021.”
Stating that the government will go for reverse tendering once the committee submits its report, Jagan added, “Whoever quotes less than the amount quoted by the L1 bidder (the contracting agency which is now executing the irrigation project) will be given the works.”
Works of the power plant to be set up by GENCO were given to the contracting agency of its choice; in addition, Rs 754 crore was given as mobilisation advance, he said. The TDP members, however, continued to raise slogans.