BJP alleges corruption in ORR toll gate contract to pvt. firm
DECCAN CHRONICLE | Balu Pulipaka
Hyderabad: The BJP on Tuesday has alleged massive corruption in awarding a contract to a private company for the Nehru Outer Ring Road (ORR), claiming that the state will lose over 1.8 crore per day in toll fee.
BJP Dubbak MLA M. Raghunandan Rao demanded that the contract be cancelled immediately, that the toll gate fee be reduced, and that the BRS explain whether or not there was any connection between its attempt to enter the political space in Maharashtra and the fact that the company that won the contract was also based in Maharashtra.
If the government does not cancel the contract immediately, the BJP would file a complaint with the Directorate of Enforcement (ED), the Central Vigilance Commissioner (CVC), and the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), seeking a thorough investigation into the contract, he said.
In a press conference, Raghunandan Rao stated that there were several questions surrounding the awarding of the 30-year contract in exchange for an upfront payment of 7,380 crore to IRB Infrastructure Developers, which is based in Maharashtra. The toll collection on the ORR averaged 1.87 crore per day in April of this year, and the new contract indicated that the government had handed away the toll rights for 67 lakh per day, or roughly 246 crore per year, the BJP MLA stated.
He said that of the four bidders, the company's bid offer of 7,272 crore was the highest. However, the municipal administration and urban development department announced that the contract was awarded for 7,380 crore.
"This same company was penalised by the state government earlier for not paying the contracted amount for ORR toll gate collections. How come this get the contract now? How did this change happen? There are also questions on where the MA&UD special chief secretary Arvind Kumar and some ministers were in the intervening days before the bids were opened on April 11, and the announcement made on April 27. Where were they during this period, whom did they meet and call? All of these questions must be answered," he asked.