BMC to deploy digital technology to detect malpractices in works

MUMBAI: Learning from past mistakes, the BMC decided to strengthen its engineering department by equipping them with modern digital instruments to detect malpractices in various works on the spot, such as examine road layers and the material used beneath it. But a demonstration of the instruments recently conducted at BMC’s Worli Engineering Hub showed that the thickness of the glass facade structure was less than what was in the contract, said sources. Civic officers rubbished the claim.

The instruments, which are based on technological innovations such as laser, ultrasound, spectrographs, optical, magnetic, infrared and motion sensors, can be used to examine quality of material used as such as cement strength, concrete thickness, glass thickness, steel type and thickness of paint coating. The devices are used by a major infrastructure company in its projects.

However, civic officials did not seem to be disturbed by the finding at Worli Engineering Hub, where most of their engineers have offices. “The demonstration was held to check the efficiency of the instruments and how they will help detect corrupt practices in various civic works in the future, not find irregularities in the hub,” said a civic officer.

The BMC hires private contractors and spends crores of rupees to construct offices, schools, markets and hospital buildings as well as on road repairs. It is alleged that contractors compromise on the quality of work or material to increase profit like in the case of the Rs 352-crore road scam that came to light in 2015 after BMC chief Ajoy Mehta ordered a probe into shoddy road repairs following a complaint by the mayor.

According to a civic official, price of glass reduces by half when the thickness is less and hence, the contractor might have not adhered to the contract.

Credits ET Realty

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