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Home >> 'Dog Control Programme manipulated'

'Dog Control Programme manipulated'
Administration favoured NGO without tendering process or panel's nod, say
Standing Committee members

THE Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) Standing Committee Chairman,
Ravindra Waikar, has charged the administration with manipulating the
proposal of the 'dog control programme' in favour of the Animal Welfare
Society (AWS).

According to an agreement signed between the NGO and BMC, it has allowed
the NGO to take over part of the land at Juhu-Kapaswadi cemetery, build the
sterilisation and immunisation facilities. And now, it has put the proposal
before the Standing Committee requesting them to dispense the tendering
process in case of this Rs 1.22 crore immunisation proposal, thereby
'favouring' the AWS for the programme, says Samir Desai, member of the
Standing Committee.

The AWS has developed a facility in the 50,000 square feet land (costing Rs
1.5 crore) having two large structures with water and electricity
connections covering 8,800 square feet. It is also equipped with eight
operation theatres and over 300 kennels.

"We have been told to go ahead with sterilisations but we are only waiting
for the money which will come in after the Standing Committee gives a nod,"
said Dr Nirmal Patil, founder of AWS.

"The NGO has been given permission but only the amount of Rs 1,200 per dog
needs to get a sanction from the committee," said Kishore Gajbhiye,
Additional Municipal Commissioner, BMC.

But, the Standing Committee members disagree with Gajbhiye and claim that
they have been kept in the dark regarding this intention of the

"The proposal gives comparisons between rates that are charged by five
different NGOs and tries to project that (AWS) is superior because of their
experience, and without telling us that getting an approval from us is just
a formality. It seems like a clear manipulation," said Standing Committee
Chairman, Ravindra Waikar, who says that none of the members knew about
these developments.

"If the commissioner had decided that they want the dog control programme
to be given to AWS, then why not be transparent about it," added Waikar.
The calculation for the sterilisation costs in the proposal is explained
"Rs 1,200 will be given per dog to the NGO which is provided an open plot
by the BMC and the expenditure on construction of kennel, catching and release
of dogs, electricity and water charges and other taxes to be borne by the
NGO". As opposed to other NGOs which will charge Rs 600, Rs 675, Rs 900, Rs
900, with the BMC providing other facilities.

Desai, who visited the site on Monday, was shocked to see the readiness of
the NGO to start the process - and be spared of the tendering procedure.
"Even if the NGO has a relevant agreement regarding the land and
development, it all seems very dicey. After visiting the site, the picture
has got clearer why the BMC is stressing on getting this cleared. We will
oppose the proposal on Tuesday. There is need of transparency and this was
not expected of the administration," said Desai.

Publication : IE; Section : MN; Pg : 3; Date : 14/8/07