Absence of requisite approval and non-fulfilment of bidding norms in the acquisition of planes by Aero Club of India (ACI) resulted in unfruitful expenditure worth Rs 2.39 crore, according to CAG.
The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) today said that despite non-fulfilment of stipulated conditions in the bidding documents, ACI irregularly selected Compact Technology Light Sport (CTLS) aircraft.
While the planes were procured by ACI in December 2011, the auditor said DGCA did not convey its decision to withdraw approval given to CTLS planes earlier.
“… in spite of non-fulfilment of the conditions stipulated in the bidding documents, the CTLS aircraft were irregularly selected. Resultantly, in absence of requisite approval from DGCA, these were lying idle (November 2015),” CAG said.
“Thus, besides the purpose of acquisition of CTLS aircraft being defeated, the expenditure of Rs 2.39 crore incurred was also rendered unfruitful.”
The remarks are part of the Union Government (Civil) Compliance Audit Observations report for the year ended March 2015, which was tabled in Parliament today.
In March 2011, the Civil Aviation Ministry had sanctioned ACI’s proposal to purchase three single engine trainer/ aerosports aircraft. The ministry also released grants-in- aid in this regard.
ACI placed the purchase order in April 2011 with Thrust Aviation for three CTLS aircraft. The club had first forwarded the proposal to the minister in March 2010.
CAG found that despite CTLS not fulfilling the bidding conditions, Thrust Aviation was selected as successful bidder and after the ministry’s approval, the order was issued.
“The DGCA… was aware (March 2011) of the fact that CTLS aircraft did not meet requirements of Aircraft Rules, 1937 for issue of Certificate of Airworthiness, but they did not inform ACI of the same in order to put a timely stop to the process of procurement (April 2011) of uncertified aircraft,” the report said.