Corruption in carrying out repairs at Fort Sinhgad; HJS demands recovery of full amount and and repairs of fort

From left : Shri. Sudhakar Sanganwar, ‘Pujya’ Sunil Chincholkar, Shri. Shambhu Gaware, Shri. Pravin Naik, Shri. Parag Gokhale

Pune / Pimpri : Fort Sinhgad was sanctified by Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj due to his presence; which has also become memorial because of the sacrifice of ‘Narveer’ Tanaji Malusare. It is a seat of faith for all Shivaji-patrons. In 2012-2014, repairs were carried out on this fort by giving contract at the cost of Rs. 1.39 crores but the quality of work is extremely inferior, revealing corruption.

College of Engineering, Shivajinagar, Pune has submitted a report on 8.5.2014 to the District Collector and concerned authorities in this connection. The Government has, however, not done anything except asking for explanation from the concerned. It clearly shows that the guilty contractors and administrative officers are deliberately shielded. The contractor should, therefore, be first black-listed and criminal case should be filed against him.

It is our demand that full amount of repairs; involved in corruption should be recovered, with interest, from the concerned contractor and government officers; and repairs and renovation of the fort should be arranged to be done through an honest and expert contractor. State-wide agitations will be staged by Shivaji-patrons and ‘Hindutvavadi’ organizations; in case necessary action is not taken on our demand.

The above warning was given by Hindu Janajagruti Samiti (HJS) during press conferences held at Pune and Pimpri on 12th September.  (Is it not shameful for the Govt. that ‘Hindutvavadi’ organizations have to hold press conference, demand action against corrupt contractor and concerned officers and warn Govt. of staging agitations ? Chhatrapati, who with the help of such forts, defeated five powerful kings. Corruption at such place is blot on history of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Govt. is expected to take prompt action in the matter. – Editor,

‘Pujya’ Sunil Chincholkar, a senior Samarth-devotee, Shri. Sudhakar Sanganwar of ‘Yoga Vedanta Seva Samiti’, Shri. Shambhu Gaware of Sanatan Sanstha, Shri. Parag Gokhale of Hindu Janajagruti Samiti and Shri. Pravin Naik coordinator of this movement, were present for the press conference.

Corruption in work carried out on forts is a tragedy ! – ‘Pujya’ Sunil Chincholkar  

Forts are like modern places of pilgrimage; they are inspirational source for the youth and corruption at such places is tragedy. On one hand, billions of rupees are spent in constructing memorial of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and on the other hand, principles taught by him are trampled. Such paradox should be stopped. Not a single incident of corruption was reported during the regime of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. True homage to him will be putting into practice the values taught by him.

Shri. Sudhakar Sanganwar said, “Yoga Vedanta Seva Samiti totally supports movement staged against corruption in carrying out repairs at Sinhgad. We shall participate in this movement and make it a success.”

Shri. Pravin Naik informed that demonstrations will be staged at Dange Chowk at Chinchwad on 16 Sept and at Bal Gandharv Chowk in Pune on 17th September. Shri. Shambhu Gaware explained about inferior quality of repair work carried out, by showing pictures and Shri. Parag Gokhale of HJS explained the purpose of this movement.

Intense agitations will be staged for corruption-free Sinhgad ! – Shri. Sachin Thorat, Pimpri-Chinchwad area chief of Shri Shivapratishthan Hindustan

Chinchwad : Shri. Pravin Naik and Shri. Shambhu Gaware of Sanatan Sanstha, Shri. Parag Gokhale of HJS and Shri. Sachin Thorat, Pimpri-Chinchwad area-chief of Shri Shivapratishthan Hindustan participated in the press conference held here.

From left – Shri. Sachin Thorat, Shri. Shambhu Gaware, Shri. Pravin Naik, Shri. Parag Gokhale

Forts of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj played a pivotal role in building of the nation at that time. Fort Sinhgad known for the sacrifice of Narveer Tanaji Malusare facing such kind of corruption is quite enraging. Works related to repairs and preservation should have been done in appropriate manner. The Government must take stringent action against the corrupt; else intense agitations would be staged against the repair work carried out at Fort Sinhgad.

What is the background of this issue ?

Few examples of corruption in carrying out repairs at Sinhgad !

Under right to information, advocate Virendra Ichalkaranjikar, national President of Hindu Vidhidnya Parishada (HVP), obtained a report prepared by College of Engineering, Pune and following observations have been made in the report.

1. Inferior quality of construction work

A. There is a difference of 25 % in the estimated amount indicated in budget of construction work and actual work undertaken.

B. Standard of construction has not been maintained. There is no record of work done using stones.

C. Quality of stone work is extremely inferior and contrary to original construction.  Joints between two stones are not filled properly.

D. No inspection has been carried out of the construction work and it is observed that the work has been done through unskilled workers.

E. Cement used was not checked for quality.

2. The figure increased manifold for taking out sludge from water tanks !

70% of the amount of budget has been shown for removal of sludge but there is vast difference in the amount spent in reality.

A. It has been shown that 1380 cubic metres of sludge has been removed from tank no. 30; but in reality, only 2 cubic metre of sludge seems to have been removed as per the account book.

B. It has been shown that 474.3 Cu.M of sludge was removed from tank No. 25 when it is observed that very little excavation work has been undertaken.

C. As per the accounts book, only 2-3 Cu M sludge has been removed as against 2036.5 Cu M shown against tank no. 21 (Hatti Taki). It shows that 240 truck-load of sludge was removed from this tank though the capacity of the tank is much less.

3. It is observed that the repairs work given to project advisors and contractors had no experience in archaeological constructions.

4. Provisions mandatory for construction related to archaeology department were not at all followed anywhere in the project. It has been only shown that large number of trees and shrubs etc were removed from the fort but in fact, no such work has been carried out. College of Engineering has remarked that the work given on contract has caused more harm to the original construction of the fort.

5. Despite serious nature of the issue involving expenditure of Rs. 1.5 crore, departmental inquiry was conducted against a junior engineer named S. V. Dalvi after 3 years and in April 2017, only his two increments were stayed. No other action has been taken in this case. The issue is not as simple as it is made out to be and it is clear that it is a corruption case carried out collectively but has been suppressed. Reasons for the same as on today are as given below.

A. Before taking out tenders, nobody has studied the matter; then how can whole responsibility be thrust upon a junior engineer ? It is necessary to take action even against the concerned officers.

B. If the junior engineer had issued tender purposely without showing it to anyone, how it was not detected at any level or stopped? How is it possible? Are other officers not responsible too?

C. It is necessary to have limits on how much tender amount should be allowed for the level of junior officer of Archaeology Department. It is hard to believe that corruption of Rs. 1 crore in taking out tenders went unnoticed and was passed. It is a case of collective corruption and needs to be interrogated in depth.

Representation submitted by ‘Samarth-devotee’ ‘Pujya’ Chincholkar

Officers can dare to indulge in corrupt practices when the rulers are corrupt !

In 1645 after conquering Fort Rajgad, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj started construction like digging of wells, lakes, construction of solid fencing etc. at the Fort. Few workers found two pots filled with gold at one place while digging and they deposited the same in Government treasury. Nobody was tempted to keep anything because character of Maharaj was so spotless. Not a single incident of corruption was recorded during the regime of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj. Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, when looted Surat, deposited all the loot comprising of gold and other valuables in Government coffers. On Sinhgad, Tanaji Malusare gave priority to his duty over his son’s marriage and finally sacrificed his life in the battle. On such Sinhgad, case of corruption has been reported; isn’t it a big tragedy ? Had Maharaj been alive today, one cannot imagine what he would have done. If rulers are corrupt, only then officers dare to do such things. This incident must be taken seriously.

For making ‘Swarajya’ into ‘Surajya (good governance)’, we must remember Shivaraya’s valour and his determination.

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