The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) came down heavily on the Railways for the delay in processing, assigning and completing the projects for electrification. It also said that the railways did not adopt the e-tendering system to reduce the tender processing period.
The CAG in its report, which was tabled in Parliament on Friday said it had done an audit on the 14 completed projects, 15 ongoing projects and seven new projects for detailed examination.
In its report, the CAG said: "The objective of saving time for deciding whether or not to take up a section for the railway electrification is not being fulfilled due to delays in processing the proposals and preparation of abstract estimates, which was up to 59 months in 24 projects."
The CAG report also pointed out that variations of six per cent to 62 per cent between the abstract and detailed estimates indicated that the system of abstract estimates were hardly adding value to the process.
"The percentage variation was more than 40 per cent in respect of Karepalli-Bhadrachalam, Shakurbasti-Rohtak, Jhansi-Kanpur, Barauni-Katihar-Guwahati and Gunatakal-Kallur projects," the central auditor said.
The CAG also highlighted that delays were noticed in assigning the electrification projects to agencies by the Railways Board after inclusion of the electrification projects in the annual works programme.
"There were delays up to 337 days in 17 projects in case of Central Organisation for Railways Electrification (CORE) and in case of Rail Vikas Nigam Limited (RVNL), the delays were up to 202 days in six projects," the CAG said.
"Further delays were also noticed in assigning project to their Chief Project Directors by CORE and RVNL, which was up to 229 days and 40 days respectively," it added.
Rapping the Railways, the CAG said that there were delays in the approval of the detailed estimates upto 35 months in 27 projects assigned to CORE and upto 18 months in seven projects assigned to RVNL.
The CAG said that the e-tendering system which helped in reducing the tender process was not adopted in the case of CORE and RVNL.
"The time taken for the issue of notice inviting tender (NIT) after sanction of detailed estimates was upto 3,177 days in 27 projects assigned to CORE and up to 915 days in 12 tenders in seven projects assigned to RVNL," it said in its report.
The CAG then said that it was evident that the tenders were processed without giving due regard to the objective of the completion of the project in time.