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Government earns less than its contractors?

Saturday, January 13, 2018
By Philip Varghese

A Mumbai-based RTI activist has found that the towing contract generates Rs. 9.22  crores for Vidarbha Infotek Ltd, whereas traffic police get only Rs. 5.92 crores in one year

The Mumbai Traffic Police seems to have relinquished it's revenue in favour of a private towing contractor. In one year of service, the Mumbai Traffic Police has received Rs. 5.92 crores, whereas the controversial M/s Vidarbha Infotek Ltd has generated Rs. 9.22 crores as per  information accessed by Right to Information (RTI) activist Anil Galgali from the Joint Commissioner of the Traffic Police department.

Galgali had sought information from the Joint Commissioner – Traffic Police department about the contract awarded to M/s Vidarbha Infotek Ltd for providing vehicle towing services.

Ashok Shinde from the Traffic treasury informed Galgali that the towing service of Vidarbha Infotek Ltd was started from December 2016 onwards. From then, upto 30th November 2017, the traffic department has received a settlement amount of Rs. 5,91,67,800, whereas Vidarbha Infotek Ltd has taken Rs. 9,22,37,148 as towing charges.

In  December 2016, a settlement amount of Rs. 80,800 was recovered from 404 four wheelers and Rs. 1,85,840 was recovered from towing charges.

In the balance 11 months of 2017, from Rs. 1,95,843 – two wheelers and Rs. 99,592 for four wheelers – a settlement amount of Rs. 5,90,87,000 and towing charges for amount of Rs. 9,20,51,308 was recovered.

Out of a total amounting to Rs. 15,14,04,948, around 39 percent of revenue came to the Traffic Police department, whereas the contractor Vidarbha Infotek Ltd has pocketed 61 percent of revenue. The whole contract is for 75 months involving a bank guarantee of Rs. 5 Crores.

Galgali had further sought information about the company, namely it list of Board of Directors and their balance sheet, for which the department responded that the same is not on their records.    “The share being given to Vidarbha Infotek Ltd is disproportionate and unreasonable amd the terms of agreement relating to the period of operations and share percentage is not beneficial for the government and favourable for the contractor. In a letter addressed to CM Devendra Fadnavis, I have demanded that the government should scrutinize the agreement executed with Vidarbha Infotek Ltd.,” Galgali went on to add.

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