Stating that using Meghalaya Energy Corruption Limited (MeECL) as milching cow will ultimately cripple it, Former Chief Minister and leader of opposition in Meghalaya Legislative Assembly Dr. Mukul M Sangma allege that the department is being used as a milch cow by the authorities and political leadership at the helms of affairs. Even as he said that a well-scripted modus operandi to milch the state and thereby damage the interest of the state is being taken up.
Dr Sangma said, “There are huge instances where the people in power have used the MeECL as a milch cow to serve their vested interests. Using the MeECL as a milch cow will ultimately cripple the MeECL and the state economy.”
Talking to media a day after the employees of MeECL organised a protest demonstration as well as Black Flag, he came out in support of agitating employees of the Meghalaya Energy Corporation Limited (MeECL) saying that this had to be taken seriously because the employees of MeECL represent the “whole human resources which take care of this very important organization”.
“It is seen it’s not just a political party even the employees of MeECL has spoken, they are probably not in a position to keep silent, therefore, in the interest of the state they have spoken.”
“They are protesting, demonstrating and they are agitating now this is something we need to take seriously,” he added.
He further asserted that Congress is raising these issues intending to send a powerful message and wake-up call to everyone on the illegalities which are taking place in the state.
“MeECL we have seen in preceding months when we tried to draw the attention of the government to correct things and avoid doing things which are detrimental to the survival of this organization, all our call all our voices have fallen on deaf ears. We have done it outside the house, inside the house but it doesn’t mean just because they pretend to be deaf, we will not be speaking nor repeating it, we will continue to repeat,” he told reporters. “We will ensure that the interest of the state supersede everything. In the preceding years, we have demonstrated that our commitment our dedication will always be for the interest of the state and the people as a whole,” he added.
Dr. Mukul Sangma today alleged that corrupt practices were going on in projects under the Saubhagya scheme and Ganol Hydro Project. Dr. Sangma accuses the government of manipulating the tendering process to ensure that a predetermined bidder is qualified.
According to him, procurement of the materials makes up over 70 percent of the project cost under the Saubhagya scheme, which is under implementation.
Referring to the procurement and supply of galvanised steel pole of 9.5 meters and 8 meters, Sangma informed that the approved Schedule of Rates (SOR) for 9.5 meters is Rs. 16,900 adding that the SOR is based on the market survey by any organisation whether PHE, PWD or MeECL.
Sangma said that the bidder who was selected to implement the project in the eastern region- Khasi Jaintia hills region- Satnam Global Infraprojects Limited identified and selected bidder quoted Rs. 24,126 for the 9.5 meters galvanised steel pole while the bidder who would implement the project in the western part M/S Onycon, the selected bidder quoted Rs. 28,830, which has difference of 70.59 per cent from the approved SOR.
Informing that the approved rate for the 8.5 meters galvanised steel pole is Rs. 12,795, Sangma stated that the bidder implementing the project in the eastern part that particular bidder has quoted Rs. 20,808 which is 62.63 per cent above the SOR while in the western part; the bidder quoted Rs. 19,182 which is 49.92 per cent more.
On the procurement of the ACSR weasel conductor, Sangma said that the approved rate is Rs. 19,429, and the quoted rate which was accepted and awarded was Rs. 43,879 in the eastern region (khasi Jaintia hills) and Rs 51,149 in the western region (Garo Hills).
“The difference in Garo hills region is 163.26 percent,” Sangma said.
“You can easily understand how the modus operandi has been scripted. If they were competition, if the tendering bidding document was not tampered upon then many would have been qualified, there would have been competition, the price would have gone below and thereby resulting in saving hundreds of crores,” he said.
“This is how the MeECL is being crippled. There is a matching share from the state government which is converted into loan as nothing goes free to the company as when any money is given to MeECL or MCCL or any government companies it goes as a loan from the government,” he alleged.
“It doesn’t go for free except on certain occasions when the government decides otherwise to provide grants and government is not in a position to give grants, if they were in a position to give a grant, I don’t know whether this year they will release pending arrear of the revised pay we started paying during our time,” he said.
“Now employees of MeECL are not getting salaries and forget about arrears. Is it not an alarm bell for all of us to wake up. Another modus operandi, there has been a kind of concerted effort by the government to divert issues and to divert the narrative and hide the truth.