Tardy road repair blamed on tender

Though works up to Rs15 lakh don’t need it.
Thiruvananthapuram: Lack of political will to repair roads without wasting time on lengthy tender processes has led to the deplorable conditions of city roads, say veteran councillors.
Owing to poor quality of work done by contractors and intense vehicular movement, the roads are getting damaged quickly. However, no one dares to take up work without tenders owing to fear of vigilance inquiry and bad reputation, say former councillors.
As per existing norms, corporation's works department can undertake works up to Rs 15 lakh without floating tenders.
All it needs is the request from a 'beneficiary committee' that includes a handful of local citizens. However, hardly any work was done in such a manner during the tenure of last council.
Though Mayor V K Prasanth has said that he will explore ways to do urgent works without tenders, corporation officials say they are not ready for this.
“We can have any number of works without tender. Each of these works can cause a bad name with rivals looking for petty issues,” said former works standing committee chairman V S Padmakumar.
The newly-elected works standing committee chairman Rasiya Beegum claimed ignorance of any such provision.
It is to be noted that the corporation had over the past decade not explored the chances to revive the pothole-filling machine.
“About 15 years ago, city corporation was the first in the state to purchase a pothole filling machine. The truck-mounted machine was too big enough to fit into corporation roads. A new machine which could operate in narrower road was planned but it never materialised,” said a corporation official.

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( Source : deccan chronicle )
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