October 7, 2013
Prawesh Lama , Mihir Mishra : New Delhi,
The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has filed a complaint with the Delhi Police’s Economic Offences Wing (EOW) against the operator of the Delhi-Gurgaon expressway — the Delhi Gurgaon Super Connectivity Ltd (DGSCL).A senior government official said a complaint letter had been sent to the EOW. “The complaint was filed after a KPMG audit found the concessionaire under reporting the passenger car units (PCUs) crossing toll plazas by around half,” the official said. The move by NHAI comes in the wake of specific directions from the road transport ministry to file an FIR, by way of a letter dated October 1, 2013, in the wake of the forensic audit report submitted by KPMG.
The ministry is also of the view that terminating the contract with the concessionaire is the only option available and buying back the concession is not an option.
Confirming the receipt of the complaint, Delhi Police said it was in the process of conducting an inquiry. “We need a day or two to look into the allegations. We will find out if the case falls in our jurisdiction. A case will be registered depending on the inquiry,” Dharmendra Kumar, Special Commissioner of Police (Crime), said.
KPMG was asked to carry out a forensic audit of the traffic using the toll plazas at the Gurgaon expressway in December 2011 and it came out with its report in July 2013. The global audit firm conducted a week long, round-the-clock traffic study in July at the Gurgaon toll expressway and found that the concessionaire was underreporting at least 79,000 passenger car units (PCUs) daily.
Based on the calculations, NHAI is estimated to have lost Rs 24 crore in 10 months due to the underreporting.
The DGSCL has contested the traffic numbers presented by KPMG. “It appears that KMPG has not done any traffic count study and only presented figures provided to them by a third party vendor, which is a security services company. Our toll plazas are equipped with the most advanced Automatic Vehicle Classification and Counting (AVCC) systems which is completely computerised and there is no scope for any human error or intervention. We are scrutinising the manual data given to us. Once this data is proven incorrect, we will take strong action against the parties responsible,” a DGSCL spokesperson said.