Dharamsala: Don’t elect leaders who compromised Smart City project, says JM Pathania : The Tribune India

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Dharamsala: Don’t elect leaders who compromised Smart City project, says JM Pathania

Dharamsala MC’s ex-Commissioner launches an awareness campaign

Dharamsala: Don’t elect leaders who compromised Smart City project, says JM Pathania

Former IAS officer JS Pathania addresses a press conference in Dharamsala on Tuesday.



Tribune News Service

Dharamsala, April 23

Former IAS officer JM Pathania, who was the Commissioner of Dharamsala MC, addressed a press conference here today, demanding that political parties should only select candidates for the Dharamsala Assembly bypoll if they have definite and progressive agenda for the area. He urged people not to vote for leaders who compromised the Dharamsala Smart City project.

He said politicians, who earlier represented Dharamsala, had failed to fulfil their responsibilities towards the residents of the area. The Smart City project was a project that could have transformed Dharamsala city. Around Rs 650 crore was spent in Dharamsala under the project, but there was no concrete change in the city. The people of Dharamsala have lost an opportunity to improve their life and transform the city, he said.

Pathania said both bureaucrats and politicians who were representing the area were responsible for failure of the project.

Pathania has started an awareness campaign on how the Smart City project was compromised and people lost an opportunity to get investment worth hundred crores from the Union Government.

Pathania said the first drawback for the project was the appointment of Project Management Consultancy (PMC). In the initial stage of the project, it was decided that the only a company that had international experience would be appointed as the PMC for the project. It was decided that while selecting the PMC, 90 per cent weightage would be given to the international experience of the firm, while just 10 per cent would be given to the financial aspect. “After my transfer as Commissioner of Dharamsala MC, the condition changed and the condition of international experience was waived off. Weightage for experience was also reduced from 90 per cent to 80 per cent. As a result, most of the international companies stepped out from the PWC bid of Dharamsala Smart City project,” he said.

Pathania said in the Smart City project, as per the mandate of the Union Government, a special purpose vehicle (SPV) was formed at the local level to take speedy decisions. All decisions regarding the project were to be taken by the SPV.

However, in 2018, the government curtailed the powers of the SPV to allocate tenders up to Rs 10 crore and the power was usurped by the government. Later, the SPV structure was also changed and instead of local officers, the Chief Secretary and nine secretaries from various departments were made its members. It further delayed the implementation of the project, he added.

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