SVC asks forest dept to ensure transparent e-tendering in J&K

SVC asks forest dept to ensure transparent e-tendering in J&K

Jammu: The State vigilance Commission (SVC) today directed the Department of Forest to implement a transparent system for e-tendering, particularly for projects involving over Rs one lakh in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Principal Secretary in Department of Forest has been directed to implement orders issued by the government and the instructions by the Commission regarding e-tendering, an official statement said.
While SVC was reviewing the progress of various directions issued to forest department for ensuring transparency in government expenditure, it was revealed by the Conservator of Forests (Vigilance) that the department is still in the process of completing formalities for implementing directions with regard to e-tendering.
“Taking serious note of tardiness by the department in bringing accountability and financial discipline in the department, the Commission has directed the Administrative Secretary of forest department to fix responsibility and take action against those responsible for non-implementation of directions,” the Commission said.
It also observed that plantation work involving funds running into crores, was being carried out without inviting competition from bidders.
“The rates are being fixed by Departmental Committee, thereby making the entire process non-transparent and liable to misuse by vested interests,” the official statement said.
A complaint was lodged in this regard by Tirath Singh Manhas, convenor of Industrial Association in J-K, against the Pollution Control Board before the Commission.
“It is alleged that there is close nexus between officials of the Pollution Control Board and some private laboratories outside the state for issuing Self Monitoring Certificates (SMC) in favour of industrial units operating in J-K on consideration of hefty amounts in an ambiguous manner,” SVC said.
The Commission has recommended forming committees comprising officers with “certified integrity” for inspection of Industrial units for pollution compliance and stopping the visits of individual officers in interest of transparent governance.

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