Highlights

  • CBI to probe purchase of 1000 low-floor DTC buses after L-G insists
  • Complaint to L-G over alleged scam in bus procurement by AAP govt
  • Corruption alleged in tendering and bidding during purchase

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Delhi L-G recommends CBI probe into purchase of 1,000 low-floor DTC buses

The complaint alleges that the appointment of the Minister of Transport Kailash Gahlot as the chairman of the committee for tendering and procurement of buses by the DTC was done in a “premeditated manner”.

Delhi Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena has approved a proposal to forward a complaint to the CBI seeking to probe alleged corruption in the procurement of 1,000 low-floor buses by the Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC), sources said on Saturday.

A complaint addressed to Saxena in June 2022 highlighted irregularities in the tendering and bidding process and was forwarded to chief secretary Naresh Kumar for comments in July. Kumar submitted his report to the L-G and the complaint has now been forwarded to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), officials said.

The report submitted by the chief secretary to the L-G on August 19 pointed out certain “irregularities”, including that DIMTS and DTC’s tender committee did not evaluate the financial bids correctly.

The complaint alleges that the appointment of the Minister of Transport Kailash Gahlot as the chairman of the committee for tendering and procurement of buses by the DTC was done in a “premeditated manner”. It also claims that the appointment of DIMTS as bid management consultant for this tender was done with an aim to “facilitate wrongdoing”.

Also Watch| Delhi political face-off: AAP leaders allege corruption by LG, Saxena refutes

The procurement bid for 1,000 low-floor BS-IV and BS-VI buses in 2019, followed by another one in March 2020 for the purchase and annual maintenance contract for low-floor BS-VI buses, was in contravention of rules, as per the allegations.

The CBI is already conducting a preliminary inquiry into the annual maintainable contracts of the procurement of these buses. Meanwhile, Saxena approved the clubbing of this complaint with the one already being probed.

A committee headed by retired IAS officer OP Aggrawal (retd) constituted to look into the charges of corruption in the procurement of buses in June 2021, in its report submitted in August 2021, had clearly indicted the AAP government for “procedural deviations in the entire tendering and procurement procedure”, the sources said.

“Criminal misconduct by public servants in this tender exercise will be ascertained by the investigating agency, ie the CBI. On the basis of this, the chief secretary recommended referring the matter to the CBI, which was approved by the L-G,” said a source.

With PTI inputs

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