Punjab and Haryana High Court notice to Chandigarh on plea alleging change in eligibility conditions

Punjab and Haryana High Court notice to Chandigarh on plea alleging change in eligibility conditions

If allegations in a petition filed before the Punjab and Haryana High Court are to be believed, the eligibility criteria was modified to make a partnership concern eligible for running a health club in hotel Shivalik View, Chandigarh. - File photo

Saurabh Malik

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 3

If allegations in a petition filed before the Punjab and Haryana High Court are to be believed, the eligibility criteria was modified to make a partnership concern eligible for running a health club in hotel Shivalik View, Chandigarh.

In its petition placed before the Bench of Justice Augustine George Masih and Justice Ashok Kumar Verma, petitioner M/S United House, through its counsel Sumeet Goel, submitted the modification in the criteria was illegal, arbitrary, unlawful and against the well-established procedure of law. It was done to grant undue favour to the respondent firm which otherwise was ineligible as per the original terms and conditions of the tender document.

Taking up the petition, the Bench issued notice of motion to the Chandigarh Administration and other respondents. The Bench also posted the matter for consideration in July last week. Appearing before the Bench through videoconferencing, Goel added the amendments made to the criteria was done to ensure a maximum profit to an individual, who happened to have positive relationship with some officials in the department concerned. But all this was done at the cost of public safety.

The administration could not be expected to allow a person who only has some experience in running a private spa to run a gymnasium. An inexperienced gymnasium owner could in the process compromise public safety resulting in serious bodily injuries.

Goel added in the petitioner’s behalf that a specific affidavit in this regard from the respondents would lift the veil and expose the entire fraud which had been played with the other contestants.

Going into the details, the petitioner claimed that a perusal of the original tender documents would reveal that there was a specific condition that the bidder was required to have a minimum three years of experience in managing/ running/operating at least one gym, spa and pool in a four star or a five star hotel property.

Interestingly, in the present case the eligibility was changed of having a minimum three-year experience of managing/operating/running at least one gym, spa or pool in any hotel without any reason. It has now been further modified.

“Had the terms and conditions of the original tender document been applicable upon the respondent, he would not have been remotely eligible and it is only to give undue benefit to him that the said orchestration has been done,” Goel added.

Petitioner’s concern

The administration cannot be expected to allow a person who only has some experience in running a private spa to run a gymnasium. An inexperienced gymnasium owner could in the process compromise public safety, resulting in serious bodily injuries.

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