Civic contractors yet to be paid over Rs 30 crore

Won't take up urgent monsoon work'.

Chennai: Contractors associated with Chennai corporation have expressed displeasure with babus for delaying payments estimating to more than Rs 30 crore.

According to informed corporation sources, the contractors who usually maintain a cordial relationship with zonal engineers are now in an agitated mode as payments for the completed civic works like road repairs, road widening and stormwater drain constructions have been pending for the past four months citing lack of funds.

The private players have also warned field engineers that they would not take up any urgent monsoon work issued to them with work orders, if the pending arrears were not released immediately.

The situation reached the nadir with field engineers during a recent meeting with chief engineer M. Pugalenthi expressing their difficulty in coordinating with the contractors. The chief engineer had a tough time with his subordinates. Only after the top engineer assured that monsoon funds were expected any time, the engineers calmed down.

“Ahead of assembly elections, one of my friends mortgaged his house in Ashok Nagar to complete a few stretches of pending road repair works. The engineers initially encouraged him assuring payments within a fortnight, but now their avoiding him. He has now left for his native place in Tiruvallur with lenders targeting him,” a corporation contractor said seeking anonymity.

When contacted, a senior corporation official attached with central region said he would look into the issue and take necessary action to release the funds for completed projects coming under his jurisdiction.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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