After drawing flak over Smart City project work, Goa govt removes consultant

Panaji, June 13 (IANS) After drawing flak from political leaders and locals over the works for the Smart City project in Panaji, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said on Thursday that the project consultant has been removed and action will be taken against the erring contractors.

Speaking to mediapersons here, Sawant said that all the safety measures are being taken to prevent any accidents in the city due to the ongoing work for the Smart City project.

“We are conducting a detailed audit of the works. The project consultant has been removed. We will also take action against the contractors,” Sawant said.

Earlier, Panaji BJP MLA and Revenue Minister Atanasio Monserrate had called the ongoing work for the Smart City project as sub-standard.

Claiming that the standard of work has been compromised for corruption worth Rs 1,140 crore, the Congress had demanded the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) prepare a special audit of all the 47 projects reportedly undertaken by the Imagine Panaji Smart City Development Ltd (IPSCDL) under the Smart City and Amrut Mission.

It had demanded action against the contractors alleging that sub-standard work added to the problems of the city.

Alleging corruption in the Smart City project, Goa Forward Party MLA Vijai Sardesai has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to order a comprehensive audit of the project, encompassing financial, quality, and safety aspects.

In his letter to PM Modi, Sardesai said that there are grave allegations of massive corruption and financial misappropriation associated with the project.

“Despite Chief Minister Pramod Sawant acknowledging the faults of the consultant, no significant action has been taken against the contractor. The contractor in question has a history of sub-standard work across various departments, yet he continues to receive government contracts. For the above reasons, the Panaji Smart City project is in dire need of your intervention,” the letter read.

–IANS

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