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Justice Ravindra Ghuge Recuses From Hearing Plea Accusing Sitting Bombay HC Judge of Involvement In A Tender Process

Sharmeen Hakim
28 Sep 2022 4:00 PM GMT
Justice Ravindra Ghuge Recuses From Hearing Plea Accusing Sitting Bombay HC Judge of Involvement In A Tender Process
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Justice Ravindra Ghuge heading a division bench at Aurangabad on Wednesday recused from hearing a contractor's plea against the rejection of his technical bid to construct a ground plus 10 storey structure for High Court judges at Sneha Nagar, Aurangabad. The petition filed by Tajuddin Pathan of Baba Construction, through Advocates Gunratan Sadavarte and Jaishri Patil,...

Justice Ravindra Ghuge heading a division bench at Aurangabad on Wednesday recused from hearing a contractor's plea against the rejection of his technical bid to construct a ground plus 10 storey structure for High Court judges at Sneha Nagar, Aurangabad.

The petition filed by Tajuddin Pathan of Baba Construction, through Advocates Gunratan Sadavarte and Jaishri Patil, alleges malafide against an MLA and a sitting HC judge, however, neither of them have been impleaded as respondents.

Pathan has sought a judicial inquiry, registration of FIR and directions to recall the work order recently issued in favour of Wonder Construction in the matter, alleging a scam worth Rs 45 crore.

"That it is brought to your attention how in an epic blatantly opaque manner the bidding procedure which is being conducted by PWD office at Aurangabad division under the supervision of the concerned Superintendent Engineer," the plea states.

According to the petition both Wonder Construction and another company Pride Ventures were unqualified for the technical bid. It alleges that despite a tender requirement of having previously constructed a ground + 6 storey structure, Wonder Construction had completed a work order of only ground + 5 storeys, which was also still unfinished. Moreover, it was allegedly shown as Ground + 7 storeys for the bid, the petitioners alleged.

Pathan claimed this was informed to the Executive Engineer's office on July 6, 2022. A week prior on June 30, 2022 Pathan claimed that his technical bid was wrongly disqualified despite the fact that he met all the tender requirements in a "completely biased and prejudiced manner."

Subsequently on August 2, Pathan said he was informed that the bid had been revoked from "Technical Evaluation to Technical Bid Opening."

"Surprisingly after revoking the tender, Ms Baba Construction in the morning hours maliciously later in the day they received disqualifying them but qualifying others."

The plea states that the bid process was not stopped despite an order of the Secretary of the Public Works Department on July 20, 2022, directing that "all tender process which were in progress and were not completed are not deemed to be qualified and hence stayed."

It further alleges that the Superintendent Engineer was working on the HC judge's instructions. The respondents in the PIL are Secretary General of the Supreme Court of India, Registrar General of the Bombay High Court, Secretary, PWD, Maharashtra Government's, among others.

After Justice Ghuge's recusal in the morning, the petition is likely to be placed before Chief Justice Dipankar Datta on the administrative side to be placed before an appropriate bench for a hearing.

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