New Delhi, Aug 4: The World Bank has debarred Consulting Engineering Services (India) for five years on charges of fraud and corruption in an NH project in India.
The decision follows a World Bank investigation and review of poorly performing road construction contracts under the bank-financed project, for which CES was the supervision consultant, the bank said in a statement on Friday.
Consulting Engineering Services (CES) will not qualify for any contract financed by the World Bank Group during the five-year debarment, which came into effect on Friday.
"The debarment is part of a Negotiated Resolution Agreement between the World Bank and CES that addresses misconduct that occurred under CES's former ownership and former management. The settlement resolves an investigation into allegations that CES defrauded the Highway Project and received bribes from construction contractors on the Project," the statement said.
CES has agreed not to contest that its engineers approved forged and falsified invoices to support advance claims for payment under the contracts, in part in exchange for receiving improper cash payments and other things of value for their personal benefit.
The company also agreed not to contest the fact that the bid submitted by its former management and former owners for the supervision contract contained falsified credentials of its proposed staff.
In addition to conducting its own internal investigation, CES has fully cooperated with the World Bank Integrity team and has begun reforming its corporate compliance program.
"This case demonstrates the World Bank's strong commitment to manage corruption risks and the progressive shift we are making in promoting corporate compliance," said Leonard McCarthy, World Bank Integrity Vice President. "Companies, like CES, who, when notified of misconduct, self-investigate and take actions against wrongdoers offer a good example."
The debarment may be converted to conditional non-debarment at the end of the first 24 months if CES fulfils its obligations under the agreement, the World Bank said.