BELAGAVI: The case of civil contractor Santosh Patil’s suicide took a new turn on Monday when a team of contractors from Belagavi claimed that they had taken up road development works at Hindalga Gram Panchayat limits on the instructions of Patil and panchayat president Nagesh Mannolkar.
The disclosure implies that Patil had assigned the development of 108 roads to several other road contractors. The number of such contractors involved in taking up “piece” works is not clear, but Raju Jadhav, one of the contractors, said the works were assigned to at least 10-12 of them. The contractors met former minister Ramesh Jarkiholi at his residence in Gokak on Monday before speaking to the media.
Jadhav and other contractors said they took up the works only after being assured of payments by Patil and Mannolkar. “The two said they had the work orders,” Jadhav added. Mannolkar and Patil were pushing these sub-contractors to complete the works before the start of Laxmi Jathra at Hindalga which was being celebrated after 100 years.
Asked if they had been paid, Jadhav said they have not received any payments so far. “We have invested our money into the road works and Patil was supposed to clear the bills. We are not aware of how much money was invested or availed as loan by Patil for the project. He may have been under pressure to clear our dues and that was why he may have claimed he owed huge amounts,’’ he added. Jadhav said he was not aware whether 40 per cent commission was being demanded from Patil.