Chandigarh: Public health division executive engineer indicted in 2 inquiries

Executive engineer of the public health division of the Municipal Corporation BK Dhawan is in the eye of a storm after he was indicted in two inquiries conducted by the Superintending Engineer. The inquiries were ordered by the UT Adviser Vijay Dev earlier this year. Two complaints were lodged with the Adviser on February 4, 2015 by Envirocure Projects. The first complaint claimed Dhawan did not pay to the MC an amount of Rs 10 lakh that he had taken Public-health-divisionfrom the contractor (carrying out operation and maintenance of tubewells) on the pretext of service tax though as per central government norms, such service tax was not applicable in this instance. The second complaint alleged the executive engineer allotted tenders of operation and maintenance of tubewells to an ineligible agency later.

Superintending Engineer N P Sharma has recommended action and the file has been sent to Chief Engineer MukeshAnand. The Chief Engineer told Chandigarh Newsline, “I have received the file wherein action has been recommended and I will be sending the same to the Commissioner.” The inquiry on the first complaint states that the public health works like maintenance and repair were not in the category for levying service tax which Dhawan claimed to have deducted. It is further stated that if the executive engineer claimed to have deducted the same, it wasn’t deposited with the government in any way.

The company was allotted eight tenders in January 2013 for maintaining 120 tubewells. For the operation and maintenance of one tubewell, the company was to get Rs 6000 for each tubewell every month. The contractor sought information under Right to Information Act (RTI) wherein the executive engineer had mentioned deducting the amount in lieu of service tax. The inquiry report on the second copmplaint stated that it has been verified that the said agency which was allotted the tenders was ineligible.

Tenders in January 2014 for the operation and maintenance of tubewells was to be given again. It is an annual contract. “I have submitted my reply to the officers. If they feel I have done something wrong, I am ready to face action. That is all I can say,” said Dhawan. Last month, Dhawan was indicted and issued a show-cause notice with regard to substandard work during the laying of pipes near Sector 26-27 roundabout. Due to the substandard work, water pipes burst leaving residents of Sectors 19, 20, 21, 26 to 30 without water supply for two days.

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