Maharashtra Home Ministry can’t decide on fuel for speed boats even after 18 months
Moneylife Digital Team 13 October 2014

According to an RTI reply received by Shailesh Gandhi, the Home Ministry has even failed to reply to a proposal aimed at allowing the police to purchase fuel needed for the 72 speed boats


After the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack, Maharashtra bought about 72 speedboats to beef up vigilance on the seafront. However, all the boats are lying idle because there is no fuel to run them. The Home Ministry has failed to so much as reply, for over 18 months, to a proposal aimed at allowing the police to buy fuel for the speedboats.


According to a reply received by Shailesh Gandhi, a former Central Information Commissioner, to a query under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the Director General of Police (DGP) sent a proposal to the Home Ministry to give them powers to purchase fuel for these speedboats on 16 March 2013, but there has been no reply even after 18 months.


"I am pursuing the issue of the abject failure of the State government to follow Act 21 of 2006 which mandates that no file should remain without a decision for over 90 days. Citizens should put pressure on the government to follow this Act," he said.


Mr Gandhi, said, "The speedboats are lying idle with no fuel. Officials who fail to obey the law and render an anti-terrorist measure dysfunctional are making the job of the terrorists easy. We must act in time and this is an eye opener of how delays in taking action can greatly impact our security and make a Rs32 crore purchase, useless junk."


Earlier in 2012, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) also slammed the Maharashtra Government for not making sufficient provisions for operating the Police speedboats. “Each boat consumes nearly 200 litres of petrol every day. Since there is no provision for the expenditure on the fuel and maintenance, most of the boats are lying idle, defeating the whole purpose,” the PAC had stated in its report tabled in the state Assembly.

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