In order to prevent anomalies in awarding contracts, the ministry of petroleum and natural gas has made it mandatory for companies under its ambit to opt for e-tendering for orders above specified thresholds. The government’s move is seen to bring in transparency in procurement of PSUs.
In the past, several projects of oil companies faced inordinate delays because of conflicts claims and counter claims by contractors, delay in material supply and additional cost claims by contractors.
“For the oil marketing companies such as IOC, BPCL and HPCL, e-tendering would be mandatory for purchases worth Rs 5 lakh and above. The limit would be lowered to Rs 2 lakhs and above from April 1, 2016,” an official privy to the latest norms told FE.
At the same time, the limit would be Rs 10 lakh and above for ONGC and Oil India, which would be lowered to Rs 5 lakh and above from April 1, 2016, he added. The department of expenditure has already set a limit of Rs 10 lakh and above for e-procurement for all ministries and government departments. This limit would be brought down to Rs 5 lakh and above from April 1, 2016.
Till now, ONGC has been awarding contracts worth Rs 1 crore and above through e-tender, while in case of Oil India it is purchasing via e-tenders goods worth Rs 25 lakh and above. On the other hand, IOC comes up with a tender for purchases Rs 5 lakhs and above.
In addition, the petroleum ministry has suggest the companies to adopt centralised procurement for similar items, which would enable price advantages. Also, the companies would share price list of bulk item every quarter among themselves to derive maximum price advantage.
Petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan is taking stringent actions against any irregularities in awarding contracts by the PSUs. Recently, Shashi Shankar, director (technical and field services) has been placed under suspension pending, disciplinary proceedings against him. The petroleum ministry said a vigilance inquiry relating to finalisation of a tender for procurement has been instituted against Shankar.
From now, the PSUs would also strictly adhere to blacklisting of vendors. If any forgery or malpractice are involved dealing with one company, the vendor may be blacklisted by all companies.