MMC yet to appoint consultant to certify Fomento Green bills


Fomento Green has raised two bills amounting to Rs 1.30 crore each towards setting up the Rs 7.31 crore waste treatment plant at Sonsodo, but the Margao Civic body is yet to put in place a consultant to clear the bills or certify that the company has installed the solid waste management plant as per the Concession agreement.
The Concession Agreement inked between the Civic body and Fomento Green mandates the Municipality to appoint a consultant to certify the bills raised by the company for clearance. The consultant was also expected to monitor works on the solid waste management and accord its approval.
The Municipal Council, however, has resolved to dispense with the consultant and instead constitute a committee of officials to certify the bills and works at Sonsodo. At the Council meeting, the City Fathers had scrapped the earlier decision to appoint Ahmedabad-based P U Asnani as a consultant to assist and guide the body in the setting up of the solid waste management plant at Sonsodo. It is learnt that the Council took this decision when the copy of the draft agreement was placed for approval since the body had already issued the work order to the Ahmedabad-based consultant.
Whether the Municipal Council would stick to its decision opposing Asnani for the consultancy will be clear only at the next meeting at the time of confirmation of minutes of the previous meeting. 
Herald understands that a proposal is being mooted in the corridors of the Civic body to entrust the consultancy work to Kerala-based Gopalkrishnan, who has been engaged by the body for the Sonsodo capping work. Questions are being raised whether the Civic body can engage a consultant without inviting Expression of Interest by throwing transparency norms to the winds.
When contacted, MMC Chief Officer Srinet Kothwale said that the civic body is weighing various options on appointing an expert to certify bills submitted by Fomento Green. “The civic body is weighing the option of asking Gopalkrishnan to assist the civic body in certifying the bills at a nominal fee. The civic body had decided to scrap the deal with Asnani because he had quoted Rs 17 lakh. If Gopalkrishnan is willing to do the job for Rs one or two lakhs, the civic body would save huge money on the consultancy,” Kothwale added. [H]