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JKPCC peace workers turn 'big' contractors
11/24/2017 11:30:00 PM
Akshay Azad
Early Times Report
JAMMU, Nov 24: A controversial practice involving senior officials of Jammu and Kashmir Project Construction Corporation (JKPCC) in collusion with peace workers has been running in the Corporation for the last over many years but despite indictment of some officials for embezzlement of funds, there is no let off in this practice. These peace-workers, who are simply meant to supply labour for various construction works, have become major contractors, executing contracts to the tune of over Rs 10-20 Crores, only due to blessings of the senior officials of Corporation. In response to RTI application, the JKPCC has divulged a bulk of information according to which open competition, in allotment of contracts of several Crores of rupees, has been closed only to benefit some blue-eyed peace workers of JKPCC senior officials, who have been greasing the palms of officials, in lieu of contracts.
An official of JKPCC informed that the peace workers were meant only to supply labour for various works. "The cement as well as iron bars are to be provided by JKPCC whereas the labour is to be provided by peace workers but these peace workers have become so influential and powerful that they have been executing works to the tune of several Crores of rupees", the official said, adding that Ganpat bridge construction was also such example of the blessings enjoyed by these peace workers. According to the RTI documents, the peace-workers have been doing works including supplying, manufacturing and fixing in steel seating arrangement for lecture halls in colleges involving Rs. 26 Lakhs, construction of compound wall of college involving Rs. 25 lakhs, supply of sand, stone, deaodar wood frames, providing and fixing of door, laying bricks at ground flood of college, brick work for ground floor, completion of balance work of operation theatre, supply of various other materials. As per the tender document, neither the contractor of A,B,C ,D class were allowed but the tenders of JKPCC have been meant for only peace-workers, which signalled towards a corruption scandal.
"Former Minister of PWD Altaf Bukhari had also asserted that all works in JKPCC would be done as per tendering process but there was no implementation of his orders", the official said, adding that the peace-workers have made a strong lobby with the JKPCC officials and they have been making fortunes as well as the fortunes of the JKPCC officials. "Common masses are totally unaware as how one can become peace worker of JKPCC. The peace-workers of JKPCC are selected on pick and choose basis and have been doing works for the last many decades. They are close to officials so are getting contracts of several Crores of rupees when they are meant for labour supply only", another official said. General Manager of Jammu Er. Javed Iqbal, GM Kashmir Er. Vekar Mustafa didn't pick up their phones. General Manager Central Er. Harkewal Singh said that peace-workers are only to provide labour for construction works. On being asked in some division, peace-workers have been executing works to the tune of over Rs. 25 Lakhs, he said that he could only reply after getting proper information.
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