ALLEGATIONS ARE FALSE, NO TENDERS FLOATED DURING MY TENURE: PROF AIMA
It could be one of the biggest education scams in the history of Jammu and Kashmir, if probed and proved. There is a complaint of alleged corruption against the Vice Chancellor of Central University Jammu. The Typewriter is in possession of copy of the complaint and will share excerpts of the complaint in a series of reports.
According to the complainant, the Vice Chancellor of Central University of Jammu has allegedly accepted huge bribe for allowing ‘illegal’ continuation of work even after expiry of the tender period and also released payment of Rs 10 Crore to a contractor.
Instead of inviting fresh tenders, the said contractor was illegally allowed by the Vice Chancellor to continue the allotted work even after lapse of contract period. And despite his best efforts, the said contractor completed merely 33.26% of these electric works as of July 2017
“A huge bounty was shared by the Vice Chancellor for allowing illegal continuation of work and release of payment of Rs 10 crore to M/s Anil Kumar Company even after the expiry of tender period,” read the complaint, adding that all this was done in contrary to the legal opinion.
Complaint further reads that the total contract value of the work was Rs 43.99 crore and it was supposed to be completed by November 2015.
“One M/s Anil Kumar and Company was allotted project for internal and external electrical works (including erect on/commissioning of Electric sub-stations and compact substations) within Central University Campus Jammu with a contract value of Rs. 43.99 crores,” said complainant adding that a legally binding MoU was signed in May 2014 between the successful contractor and CUJ authorities with stipulated completion period of 18 months expiring in Nov, 2015.
Report read, despite lapse of contract in November 2015, the contractor had not completed the allotted work within stipulated time frame.
“Failing to complete the work within the stipulated time period, the contractor invited pecuniary and other legal action as per tender agreement but under the patronage of incumbent Vice Chancellor, neither security of the said contractor was forfeited nor any penal action was initiated against him,” reads complaint copy, adding that the Vice Chancellor also ignored the recommendations made by the then Executive Engineer.
The complainant maintained that instead of initiating action against the contractor, who failed to respect the agreement, he was still allowed by the Vice Chancellor to continue the work, throwing rules and regulations to the air.
“Instead of inviting fresh tenders, the said contractor was illegally allowed by the Vice Chancellor to continue the allotted work even after lapse of contract period. And despite his best efforts, the said contractor completed merely 33.26% of these electric works as of July 2017,” stated the complaint, adding that when such deliberate abetment was pointed out, the University authorities were compelled to approach legal counsel of the University for the opinion on tender conditions and payments.
The legal counsel, after perusing the matter in detail, advised the CUJ not to release any payment in favour of M/S Anil Kumar and Company. He further suggested blacklisting of the said company, forfeiting his security and initiating legal action against the contractor, reads the complaint.
“Rather than paying any heed to the legal opinion of standing counsel, Vice Chancellor tried to hush-up the matter in lieu of Rs 2 Crore from the contractor for not to start legal action as suggested by standing counsel,” reads the complaint, adding that not only this, overlooking the legal advice, Vice Chancellor allegedly manipulated a release of Rs.10.00 crores in favour of the contractor in 2018 from “non-existent revolving fund” without any work.
“The payment in question was vividly illegal, contrary to the tender conditions and without any work on the contract items and proved quid-pro-quo with this ill gotten money,” alleged the complainant.
When contacted Vice Chancellor, Central University of Jammu, Prof Ashok Aima refuted the allegations and said that University received no funds during his tenure.
“The tender was floated at the time of the then Vice Chancellor of CUJ, SS Baloria and no such tenders were floated during my tenure as there were no funds with the University. Moreover, the firm in question was blacklisted during my tenure and on my directions, due to non-completion of work within stipulated time,” said Prof Aima, adding that when Prof Devanand was in-charge Vice Chancellor, the contractor, in contrary to the laid down agreement, supplied the material in bulk, costing Rs 14-15 crores, which was otherwise supposed to be supplied in stages as per requirement.
Vice Chancellor said that the contractor was politically well connected and it appeared under ‘duress’ Prof Devanand, who was an officiating vice chancellor, approved the bulk supply of electric wires, as against the set agreement.
“When the matter was brought into my notice regarding supply in violation of set agreement, I approached standing counsel of the University, who suggested that as per the agreement of the tender, University has to release 60 percent of the total amount,” said Prof Aima, adding that the 60 percent of the total amount, around Rs 6-8 crore, was released in favour of the contractor during his tenure.
He further stated that why the contractor was allowed to supply in bulk during tenure of Prof Devanand, for which he had to release the payment.