New Delhi: The blatant misuse of taxpayers’ hard earned money saw no bounds during the Delhi Commonwealth Games 2010.

Despite the Delhi Police having 10,000 active wireless sets, Rs 99.81 crore were spent by the Delhi government after getting instructions from the Raj Bhawan to obtain the TETRA (Terrestrial Trunked Radio) services.

Appallingly, these TETRA services were actually used by the gardening and the sanitation departments of the Delhi government.

According to the documents available with Jagran, the TETRA services were rented not just for the Games but also for the next seven years on September 11, 2008. The decision for this ‘wasteful purchase’ was taken in a meeting called by the Delhi Lieutenant Governor. Particularly, several officials from the Sports Ministry including Suresh Kalmadi attended the meeting.

The documents also reveal that the Delhi police was reluctant to utlilise the services of TETRA and they also registered their hesitation regarding the same. But, the Delhi government and Raj Bhawan took no notice of it and ordered the services on lease for not just CWG games but also for the next seven years on a hefty price of Rs 99.81 crore.

The services were not used as the Telecom Department did not give its nod.

The tender for the services is already under the CAG scanner and noting the above expenses, the Delhi government and Raj Bhawan would certainly have to do some answering when the probe begins.

Notably, the audit and probe agencies are already investigating the wastage of Rs 100 crore in the name of beautification of the national capital.

The probe will further raise questions for the Raj Bhawan that under what conditions they gave permission for such a lease-out.

Raj Bhawan’s explanation

In reply to a Jagran mail the Raj Bhawan informed that TETRA services were chosen keeping the security in mind and that the services were used economically during the CWG. It was also mentioned that the decision was taken completely by the Delhi Government and the Organizing Committee was no way linked with it at any stage.

The reply also said that TETRA was a secured network hence there was no need to connect it to other networks.

Lieutenant Governor’s Executive Officer, Ranjan Mukherjee said, “The deal was done after getting a nod from the Delhi Police.”

Remarkably, TETRA is a successful technology which has been used effectively in the organization of several sports events worldwide.

Delhi Police’s reluctance

Contradicting the defence of Raj Bhawan, probe into the tender reveals that the Delhi Police was already equipped with 10,000 wireless sets. The police department also advised the government not to buy the TETRA services but in vain.

In fact in 2009, Delhi government’s Principal Secretary and Chief Secretary also laid an extra pressure on the Delhi Police by asking them to approve the services during the games.

After a lot of evaluation in December 2009, the order was given to HCL Motorola for Rs 99.81 crore.

Shockingly, according to the order, Delhi government has agreed to pay Rs 2100-2400 per handset every month for the next seven years to the company.

Usage of services

TETRA services based wireless handsets are basically used in emergency for communication purposes as the call gets connected very fast. This idea was basically adopted by the Delhi government from the Beijing Olympics. However, after facing rejection from DoT, these services were used on limited fronts only.

Documents divulge that the expensive TETRA services were utilized for Horticulture, education, sanitation, health and transport purposes.

Moreover, the benefits of these services were also availed by the Police Commissioner’s assistant.

(Anshuman Tiwari/JPN)