Gujarat govt. squandering public money by paying crores to a private telecom company, alleges Congress

Gandhinagar: National spokesperson of main opposition party Indian National Congress and senior party leader Shaktisinh Gohil today alleged that BJP government in Gujarat was squandering public money by paying crores of rupees to a private telecommunication company for the services which are available at a very low tariff.

Levelling these charges on Gujarat government, Gohil asked the government to give details of the deal the government has with the private company Vodafone which is minting money at public cost. He said that Gujarat government is paying 700 percent more to Vodafone for the services which were available at much cheaper rate. He said that this can be realized from the fact that GAD alone is paying exorbitant charges for 2,000 telephones. Other government organisations are following this and number of telephones with higher tariff runs into thousands. Talking to newsmen he gave documents which exposed this.

He gave copies of GR issued by GAD, CEL10203-1478 to prove that government was paying lakhs of rupees per month more to Vodafone. He said that government’ own company BSNL was offering unlimited local calls and national roaming along with 100 free SMS for 129 days in Rs 666 which worked out Rs 166 per month. On the other hand Vodafone is offering 20 GB data to its subscribers in Rs 299. What is shocking is that the same company is getting Rs 390 from Gujarat government and giving only five GB data! Thus a common subscriber of Vodafone gets five time more data than the government subscriber for whom government is paying bigger amount of Rs 390. In the case of government officers and ministers, Gujarat government is paying Rs 729 for data per month. It is ironical that when BSNL is giving unlimited calls and data in Rs 166 and Vodafone offering 20 GB data and incoming and outgoing calls in Rs 299, Gujarat government with bulk of thousands of subscribers is paying 700 per cent more. GAD alone is paying bills of 2000 and there are many more subscribers of other departments paying at same rate. He said that government is paying monthly bills ranging from Rs 700 to Rs 1900.

Gohil said that it smacks foul play and corruption and held BJP government in the state responsible for this while raising these questions.

1. Earlier these services were taken from govt company BSNL. Why a private company has been engaged in its place?

2. Govt should come out with the details of excess money paid to Vodafone and what action it will take to recover this money. What action it will take against persons responsible for this?

3. Lakhs of rupees can be saved by engaging government agency BSNL. When will government engage BSNL?

4. What favour government is taking from this private company by giving inflated tariff, Government should declare this.


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