V.S. Palaniappan

Coimbatore: The Home Department has directed the Prison Department to procure all dietary articles from the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation with a view to reducing the scope of malpractices and effecting economy in the purchase.

Hitherto, open tender procedure was adopted as per the Tamil Nadu Transparency in Tender Act in purchasing the essential commodities such as rice, wheat, sugar, rava and maida.

For procurement which was less than Rs. 5 lakh, the Prison Department resorted to limited tender approach, going by the lowest quote. If the purchase value exceeded Rs 5 lakh, the government adopted the open tender policy.

Objection

An audit team from the office of the Accountant General, while reviewing the accounts of the Prison Department, had raised an objection stating that during 2002 and 2003 it had procured rice from the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation. According to the audit objection, based on the notional calculation there was a revenue loss of Rs. 2.94 crore since the purchased contract rate of rice was higher than the Rs. 3.50 per kg of rice supplied under the Public Distribution System. Subsequently, the Additional Director General of Prisons had suggested procurement of controlled items such as wheat, sugar, rava, maida and rice from the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation. Government examined the proposal had decided to accept the same.

The GO clarified that all controlled essential commodities such as wheat, sugar, rava and maida, hitherto procured under the open tender system could henceforth be procured from the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation.

APL rates

So far as the rice is concerned, the civil supplies corporation shall supply the same at APL (Above Poverty Line) rates fixed by the Government of India.

Director-General of Prisons R. Nataraj confirmed that the GO had been circulated to authorities in various prisons and the strict compliance to the same was being ensured.

More In: TAMIL NADU | NATIONAL