Internet Ban Cost Us Millions: JK Contractors

SRINAGAR: The Kashmir based civic contractors have claimed that the snapping of the Internet service has cost them contracts worth crores of rupees. Notably, the Internet service were snapped  for 7 days in Kashmir after the execution of 2001 parliament attack convict, Mohammad Afzal Guru on January 09.

General Secretary, Jammu and Kashmir Central Contractors Coordination Committee (JKCCCC), Farooq Ahmad Dar said that E-tenders worth crores of rupees have slipped out of their hands after Centre snapped the Internet services for a week’s time here.  

“Following the execution of Guru on January 09, Internet services were snapped by Centre here. During this time, we could not submit our tenders online and lost contracts worth 10 crores of rupees. Besides, there are reports that contracts worth hundreds of crores of rupees have either been deferred or diverted to the Jammu region as the 2012-13 fiscal is nearing its completion,” Dar said.

“The E-tendering process has been ‘hectic and cumbersome’ for us since its inception in Kashmir. Despite the state government inviting tenders for contracts worth hundreds of crores, we could not apply even for a single one owing to the snapping of the internet services,” he added.

In the wake of the JKCCCC failing to bag any prestigious contract in such a scenario, Dar informed that even the contracts within the Srinagar city slipped out of the JKCCCC kitty. “Recently a tender worth rupees 11 lakhs under ITI3 was floated through the City Drainage system through the E-tendering process. After drawing no online applications, the contract was cancelled by the authorities,” he said.

“After failing to get any application for many days, a tender for contract worth rupees 33 lakhs was cancelled by R&B Budgam recently. Similarly, following poor response, tenders worth rupees 4 were either cancelled or deferred by R&B Shopain and Pulwama. A tender worth rupees 70 lakhs met the similar fate in Ganderbal,” Dar lamented.  

As funds meant for developmental works in Kashmir were diverted to Jammu region on previous occasions, Dar said that the money out of the cancelled contracts may face the same fate as the completion of financial period is nearing here.

“Based on the reports from across the Valley, we lost contracts worth rupees 30 crores upto now.  We don’t know whether the contracts may be retrieved to us or have been diverted  to the Jammu region,” he concluded.

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