HC seeks BMC reply on PIL alleging rigging of tenders for medicines

·1-min read

Mumbai, Jan 8 (PTI) The Bombay High Court on Friday directed the Mumbai civic body to respond to a PIL filed by a BJP MLA alleging compromise on standards in the procurement of medicines at hospitals amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

MLA Ashish Shelar also alleged in the public interest litigation that conditions in the tender for supply of medicines and disinfectants was changed for the benefit of certain manufacturers.

A division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice G S Kulkarni, however, noted that judicial review of a tender process was not advisable.

'The government is the master in such a tender process as it is aware of the situation and requirements. They know what conditions to impose in the tender,' Justice Kulkarni said.

'Who are you (Shelar) to complain if the bidders are alright and have no problem with the conditions imposed,' said Chief Justice Datta.

The court posted the plea for further hearing next week and asked the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) to file its affidavit in response to the petition.

Shelar's plea said that during the pandemic, medicines and disinfectants procured by civic-run hospitals should be of the highest standards.

There was 'infringement of the norms of accountability, rationality and manifestation of arbitrariness and perversity in the tendering process', it alleged.

The BMC keeps changing the eligibility criteria, Shelar claimed. PTI SP KRK KRK