Govt suffers revenue loss, fails to avert flood threat
The state government has both failed to avert the flood threat as well as lost the money in carrying out the dredging in Jhelum river.
The state spent Rs 20.23 crores on dredging 7 lakh cubic meters (CuM) of river Jhelum, but revenue of just Rs 5.91 crore has been generated from the sand and boulders excavated from the river.
According to the official documents, the Reach Dredging Private Limited, the Kolkata-based firm, was paid Rs 7.26 crores by the State government for undertaking dredging in Jehlum.
The company has generated revenue of Rs 1.57 crores has been generated from the material excavated from the river.
The agency has dredged a total 262263.25 CuM including 220412 CuM of soil and 41851 CuM of Sand, generating Rs 73,28, 685 for excavating soil and Rs 83,70,200 for sand from river Jhelum. The information was revealed by the department of irrigation and flood control division Srinagar in a reply to Right to Information (RTI) application filed by activist M M Shuja.
The Chief Engineer of the department Mir Javed Jaffer in a reply to RTI query has stated that “On behalf of Governor of Jammu and Kashmir and its pursuance to the decision taken by the State Level Contract Committee (SLCC) during its various meetings, the undersigned is pleased to award contract in favour of your firm for the work dredging of river Jhelum ranging from Bell mouth of flood spill channel to Panzinara of Kashmir valley at various spots for the total contract value of Rs 2023 Lakhs.”
The contract value includes sale consideration amount of Rs 591.50 lakhs of dredged out material as per the stipulated allotment.
Out of total Rs 2023 lakhs, the department in a reply has also stated that it has spent an amount Rs 76,58,5000 for the dredging of bell mouth flood spill channel to Noorbagh bridge for the quantity of 265000 cum.
“From Noorbagh bridge to Panzinara an amount of Rs 12,57,15,000 was also spent to dredge a of quantity 4,35,000 CuM,” reads the reply.
According to the documents, the revenue of Rs 591.50 lakhs was also recovered from the material excavated from the river including 30 percent sand and 70 percent of earth excavated from 210000 and 490000 cum respectively from the dredged river. This includes Rs 42,000000 from sand and Rs 17150000 from earth.