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KMC probe panel says contractor should be blacklisted

Kolkata: The three-member committee, constituted by Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) to probe into the death of four labourers after getting trapped inside a manhole at Purba Putiary (Kudghat) on February 25, has found lapses in the role of the contractor that was engaged in construction work under the Kolkata Environmental Improvement Investment Programme (KEIIP) in the area.

The committee has recently submitted its report to Municipal Commissioner Binod Kumar and has recommended blacklisting of the executing agency and taking legal action against them. "We are deliberating upon the report. Prima facie it has been decided that we will go by the recommendations of the inquiry committee," a senior KMC official said.

Sources in the civic body said the report pointed out that no safety measures were taken while the labourers ventured into the manhole.

Moreover, work at that particular site was not supposed to be held on that day. So, questions have been raised against the agency as to why the labourers entered the manhole.

The then Chairman Board of Administrators, KMC, Firhad Hakim, had formed a three-member committee comprising DG (KEIIP), DG (Drainage) and Deputy CMOH (Chief Municipal Officer of Health) to probe the incident. Meanwhile, compensation of Rs 5 lakh has been handed over to each of the victims' family.

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