|Early Times Report|
Srinagar, Nov 12: A Pune-based firm which was allotted the contract of operating sewage treatment plants (STPs) of J&K Lakes and Waterways Development Authority (LAWDA), has illegally sublet the contract to a local firm.
According to documents available with Early Times, the LAWDA this year floated tenders for operation of STPs at Laam, Habak and Hazratbal in Srinagar. Multiple companies participated in the bid, and finally the contract of operating STPs was allotted to the Pune-based firm Earth Water.
A representative of the firm visited Kashmir few months back and got (LoI) letter of intent for executing the contract from LAWDA vide No. LDA/245/2685-90 dated 29-09-2018 in the month of October.
On November 1, the Earth Water wrote to Executive Engineer Mechanical Division LAWDA and informed that they have authorized a local firm M/S Nawab Rehbar Service Pvt Ltd for execution of operation of STPs at Laam, Habak and Hazratbal.
M/S Nawab Rehbar Service Pvt Ltd, according to sources, is owned by a top PDP leader's son. The PDP leader and his son have hogged headlines in the past for wrong reasons. In fact, the PDP leader was removed from a top party position after most of the party leaders accused him of calling shots and resorting to favouritism.
Tender floated by LAWDA strictly bans subletting of contracts, officials told Early Times.
"The contractor shouldn't sublet whole or part of the work or any part of the work for any benefit or any interest without prior consent of the authority," reads a letter mentioning a number of other conditions.
After the passage of 12 days, Executive Engineer Mechanical Division LAWDA hasn't initiated any action against the firm despite the fact that the company itself informed him that it has sublet the contract.
Sources also revealed that the local firm has started pressurizing and traumatizing the laborers by engaging more than the approved number of laborers and technicians.
The Earth Water firm has conveyed to laborers and technicians that their salaries will be rooted through the local firm, sources added.
Despite repeated attempts, the Earth Water firm and Executive Engineer Mechanical Division LAWDA couldn't be contacted for comments.