The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has rapped the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly Secretariat for a wasteful expenditure of Rs 2.14 crore for construction of the Assembly building at the New Shillong Township which does not exist.
Terming the award to construct the proposed building as 'irregular', the CAG report, which was tabled today in the Assembly, said, "not only did the Assembly secretariat commit a gross irregularity by awarding the work to the firm which was totally outside the scope of the tender but paid Rs 2.14 crore to the firm for the work claimed to have been executed by it, for which no proof exists." "The entire expenditure of Rs 2.14 crore incurred on the purported construction has been rendered waste," the CAG report stated.
Following the destruction of the heritage Assembly building at Khyndailad in the heart of the city in January 2001, a High Powered Committee (HPC) invited tenders for 'Consultancy for Re-construction of Meghalaya Legislative Assembly' in July 2001.
The scope of consultancy work inter alia included detailed survey of the building site and approaches, preparation of master plan, site plan, layout plan architectural, structural and all related drawings and submission of soil testing report, the CAG stated. The report said that in October 2002, the Assembly secretariat issued a 'Preliminary Work Order (PWO)' to the firm to carry out the consultancy assignment.
However, in December 2002, the Assembly secretariat issued another PWO to the firm to construct the Assembly building at Khyndailad at a cost of Rs 26.62 crore and to be completed within three years. This was followed by a Final Work Order (FWO) issued to the firm in January 2003.
In August 2004, the HPC changed the site of the Assembly building from Khyndailad to Mawdiangdiang. It further informed that in November 12, 2004, the Assembly secretariat issued another FWO to the firm to construct the building at the new site at a cost of Rs 20.55 crore with the stipulation that the work was to start in consultation with the Chief Engineer (CE), PWD and should be completed within March 31, 2007.