The ambitious plans of the government of Goa to issue a contract for high security number plates has come under the scanner following a calling attention motion by the opposition leader Mr Manohar Parrikar who drew the attention of the transport minister expressing the “fear and anxiety” in the minds of the people of Goa about the decision of the government to grant the contract of fixing the high security registration plates to Shimnit Utsch Private limited who the opposition leader claimed, have a dubious background.
As a consequence of the attention drawn by the opposition leader, the Chief Minister Mr Digambar Kamat and the speaker of the Goa assembly Mr Pratapsingh Rane, urged the transport Minister Mr Ramakrishna Dhavlikar to reconsider the move of allotting the contract to the company.
Mr Manohar Parrikar alleged that the director/promoter of the company Shimnit Utsch has a criminal background. Also he pointed out that the same company was denied the contract vide order dated November 13 2006 by the director of transport due to their ineligibility. Also the BJP stalwart pointed out that the company had quoted exorbitant rates as compared to rates quoted by other companies in other states . Also traditional painters of number plates in Goa numbering around 200 were under risk of losing their traditional business adding to the unemployment scenario in the state.
Mr Parrikar also questioned the need of only approaching one supplier of such High security registration plates(HSRP) while there were other such suppliers existing in the country and implied that the government of Goa was creating an unnecessary monopoly situation which was against the interest of the consumer.
In reply the transport minister maintained that the director of the company who was convicted in a criminal case had resigned from the company and was further replaced by his son. Also the Minister informed that the company had won the contract after quoting the lowest rates. However the speaker Mr Pratapsingh Rane brushed off the justification about signing the agreement with the company in good faith and suggested that the false information if any by the company had insulted this faith and hence the government could terminate the contract.
Mr Parrikar informed the house that no other state had made HSRP compulsory and that the governments of Rajasthan and Karnataka were already restrained by the high courts with a stay on the subject .