NMC extends Cybertech contract, to rope in one more agency

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 10 Feb 2018 09:15:53


Staff Reporter,

Standing Committee of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC), in its meeting held on Friday, extended the contract of Cybertech Systems and Software Limited -- which has been drawing flak from corporators for errors in survey of properties for tax assessment purposes.

While the Standing Committee extended the contract of Cybertech till March 31, 2018, it also decided to rope in second-lowest bidder Anant Technology so that the task of survey of properties was completed in time. Sandip Jadhav, Chairman of Standing Committee, told reporters that the work of door-to-door property survey and GIS updation, mapping, linking, and seamless integration of the same with e-governance software of NMC would be divided between Cybertech and Anant Technology.

The decision was taken as Cybertech could collect only 58 per cent data till December 30, 2017. To ensure that the remaining 42 per cent data was collected to facilitate sending of property tax demands to property-owners by March 31, 2018, the Standing Committee favoured roping in second-lowest bidder from the phase when the Request for Proposal (RfP) was floated. Replying to a question, Jadhav said that NMC had paid Rs 96 lakh to Cybertech for survey of 6 lakh properties.

In its meeting, Standing Committee cleared a proposal for spending Rs 12.09 crore on various works to combat water scarcity in summer. The works include removal of silt from wells, electrification of wells, digging new borewells, installing new hydrants, taking up necessary inter-connection works, rainwater harvesting, etc. Jadhav expressed displeasure over Water Works Department putting up the proposal in February 2018 instead of December 2017. He said that short tender would be floated at zone level for these works.

Vijay Banginwar, Chief Engineer of NMC, retired on January 31, 2018. Standing Committee cleared a proposal to appoint Banginwar as Technical Consultant to NMC on contract basis for the period of one year. A proposal for temporary repair of bridge near NIT Chairman’s bungalow and Central Mall in Ramdaspeth also got nod of Standing Committee. However, of the total amount of Rs 66,08,225/- required for repairs, NMC will contribute only Rs 30 lakh and seek the remaining amount from the Government. Already, there is a proposal for reconstruction of the said bridge at an estimated cost of Rs 8 crore. Standing Committee also extended contractual services of four Firemen-Driver and 16 Firemen for a period of six months.

A proposal for construction of new shelter home on the land of library and community hall in Math Mohalla in Indora also got Standing Committee’s nod. The construction will be 458.28 sq mtr and comprise 13 rooms, dormatory for men, kitchen, dining area, and caretaker home.

Property tax rates unchanged

Standing Committee decided to keep the property tax rates for 2018-19 unchanged. Sandip Jadhav said that if the Government wanted to increase the rates, NMC would have to implement that decision later on. It may be recalled that NMC officials had been talking of upward revision in tax rates to improve NMC’s revenue.

Fresh tender for employing 141 computer operators

NMC Standing Committee cleared a proposal to float fresh tender for employing 141 computer operators. They will get remuneration as per Minimum Wages Act. To ensure that they get proper wages, the contractor concerned will have to pay their wages by way of depositing the amount in their bank accounts through electronic clearance system. If the contractor concerned does not submit to NMC the details of money deposited in bank accounts of operators hired, NMC will not release the next instalment of payment to the contractor. This condition will be included in the tender to be floated, said Sandip Jadhav.


The announcement and the trouble

In the recently held general body meeting, Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) decided to recover a penalty of Rs 10,000/- per day on Cybertech Systems and Software Limited for delay in conducting survey of properties. However, there are issues with implementation of the decision. Asked about the date from which penalty will be charged to Cybertech, Milind Meshram, Assistant Commissioner, said that it all depended on ‘evidence of occurrence’. In effect, he said that the date was yet to be determined. To another question about provision for penalty in the Request for Proposal (RfP) document at the time of inviting bids, Meshram said that the RfP had provision for Rs 500/- per day penalty in case of delay. When reporters asked questions to Sandip Jadhav, Chairman of Standing Committee, regarding the huge gap between penalty mentioned in RfP document that had legal sanction and NMC general body’s oral direction, he gave an ambiguous reply, “We will seek legal opinion for clarity in the matter.”