CHANDIGARH: With Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann-led state government has adopted a zero-tolerance policy against illegal practices, Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) suspended three officials including Superintending Engineer after irregularities were found in awarding orders for the erection of electric lines, said Power Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO here on Friday.

Those suspended officials include Superintending Engineer (SE) of Distribution Circle Ferozepur Er Bhupinder Singh, Divisional Accountant Jaswinder Singh, and Circle Assistant Ashok Kumar. In addition, the department has also terminated the services of a Computer operator involved in these irregularities.

As per the information, the minister had ordered an investigation following a complaint regarding irregularities in the award of Work Orders for the erection of electric lines for providing connections and improvement works in Mamdot Sub Division of PSPCL.

Divulging details, Power Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO said that a preliminary inquiry was conducted by the Technical Audit wing of the PSPCL and it was found that officers/officials of the PSPCL had colluded to issue Work Orders for the works, which were already completed in the previous years.

The Work Order for works done during 2017-18, 2018-19 & 2019-20 financial years were placed in 2020-21 & 2021-22 amounting worth Rs 41.88 Lakhs, he said, adding that moreover, these work orders were placed at a rate higher than the rate of the previous years when works were actually done, leading to substantial loss to PSPCL.

“It was also observed that in a few cases two work orders were placed to different contractors for the same work and payments were also released,” he said.

He said that on the basis of the preliminary report, PSPCL has suspended officers/officials found involved and further detailed inquiry has been ordered in this case. The inquiry will be conducted by a high-level committee of Chief Engineer/Enforcement and Chief Finance Officer of PSPCL to check comprehensively the role of all concerned officers/officials from the Sub-Division level up to the Chief Engineer office.

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