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Chandigarh

Posted at: Nov 14, 2017, 2:19 AM; last updated: Nov 14, 2017, 2:19 AM (IST)PURCHASE OF FRENCH TREE-PRUNING MACHINE

Mohali MC in a catch-22 situation

Akash Ghai

Tribune News Service

Mohali, November 13

The Mohali Municipal Corporation authorities, who have already paid nearly Rs 90 lakh in advance for purchasing a French tree-pruning machine, are now finding themselves in a catch-22 situation.

The reason is an ongoing inquiry into the purchase of the France-made Reach Mower-cum-tree-pruning machine, worth Rs 1.79 crore, by the office of the local government. Sources said some favours were allegedly extended by the department authorities while finalising the tender and the agreement with a Delhi-based private company, Cosmic Healer Private Limited, which had got the order.

The MC authorities had placed an order for the purchase of the machine, costing Rs 1.79 crore, with the company on December 21.

Surprisingly, half of the total price, around Rs 90 lakh, was immediately paid to the company by the MC authorities, which raised many an eyebrow.

A senior official in the department said the MC usually did not make advance payments for purchases. “Some apparent favours were extended in the deal,” alleged the official. Later, following some objections in this regard, the head office of the local government in Chandigarh sought the file of the machine and initiated an inquiry.

The machine has already arrived in the town and the company has asked the corporation to take possession of the machine by making the rest of the payment.

The corporation authorities are now in a catch-22 situation as a whopping amount has already been paid to the company. Sandeep Hans, MC Commissioner, said, “The company is now asking for the remaining payment before the delivery of the machine. How can we make the payment when an inquiry is on in this regard?”

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