The dream of a spick-and-span city has failed to clear the Patna Municipal Corporation hurdle for the second consecutive time.
“The empowered standing committee of the Patna Municipal Corporation (PMC) refused to give a no-objection certificate (NOC) to the upcoming Integrated Solid Waste Management Project for Patna when Bihar Urban Infrastructure Development Corporation (BUIDCo) made a presentation during a meeting of the panel on September 7,” BUIDCo managing director Anupam Kumar Suman told The Telegraph on Sunday.
“We have been told that the project would now go to the PMC board,” he added.
Standing committee member and ward number 4 councillor Abha Lata said: “After going through the BUIDCo’s presentation, the standing committee decided that the corresponding proposal would go to the board. The solid waste management project for Patna is a major plan. The committee thought it was necessary that all ward councillors must go through the proposals and understand the project. Besides, an NOC for such a project can be issued only after an approval of the PMC board.”
The empowered standing committee is a representative body of 72 ward councillors, with the mayor as its chairman. It comprises seven members and all of them are councillors. The PMC board comprises all 72 ward councillors, the commissioner and other administrative officers of the civic body. “The board is supposed to hold monthly meetings. But in reality, the meeting is not held every month,” a source in the civic body said.
The protocol to get an NOC for such projects is that a proposal has to be first presented before the empowered standing committee. After assessing the potentials of the proposal, the committee forwards it to the board for the final nod.
BUIDCo had made the first presentation on the Integrated Solid Waste Management Project for Patna during the July 26 standing committee meeting. “BUIDCo had made the presentation in English, but the standing committee members asked the company to prepare another presentation in Hindi. The presentation was made in Hindi on Thursday last week,” the source said.
In the last week of June, BUIDCo, on behalf of the PMC, had selected the consortium of Jindal-ITF Limited and MBM-Dallah Waste Management Services for municipal solid waste collection and transportation work in 62 wards. The consortium was supposed to undertake the project on a build-operate-transfer mode with a total project cost of Rs 110.59 crore under the centrally sponsored Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission. The sanitation work for remaining 10 wards is to be done by the PMC using its own resources.
The sources said there were differences of opinion among the top bosses of the PMC regarding payment against services delivered by the firm selected for the project. “The mayor wants the payment to the consortium of Jindal-ITF Limited and MBM-Dallah Waste Management Services be made by the PMC only. But the commissioner feels that the corresponding payment should be made by BUIDCo,” a source said.