Priyanka: Give China a Strong Message

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Thursday took a pot shot at the Narendra Modi government accusing it of adopting a weak strategy and kneeling down before China by “handing over” a rail contract to a Chinese firm and demanded the government give a strong message to the neighbouring country.

“Our 20 soldiers have been killed. In such a situation, the central government should give a strong message, but the government has adopted the strategy of kneeling by handing over the contract of Delhi-Meerut Semi-High Speed Rail Corridor to a Chinese company. All Indian companies are also capable of building this corridor,” Priyanka Gandhi said in a tweet.

Her remarks came a day after the central government clarified that the tender for constructing 5.6 km long tunnel between New Ashok Nagar to Sahibabad is in “process” and “yet to be finalised”.

On June 12, the Chinese firm Shanghai Tunnel Engineering Company Ltd (STEC) was the lowest bidder for the 5.6 km long tunnel to be built as a part of the 82 km long Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS. In a statement, the Union Urban Development Ministry said that the 82-km long RRTS being undertaken by the National Capital Region Transport Corporation (NCRTC) is an Asian Development Bank (ADB) funded project for design and construction of 5.6 km tunnel through TBM & 1 RRTS station.

Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.

It said that bids were invited on November 9 last year and the technical bid was opened on March 16 this year. The ministry further said that five companies submitted bids and qualified for financial bid opening including SKEC (Korea) and Tata, STEC, China, L&T, Afcons and Gulermakgir, Turkey.

It said that on June 12 financial bids were opened and STEC, China emerged as lowest bidder. “The tender is under process and yet to be finalised,” it said, adding that the project is funded under Asian Development Bank (ADB)/World Bank/Multi-lateral procurement guidelines do not allow discrimination among firms/countries.

The NCRTC which is undertaking the construction work of the first RRTS at semi-high speed Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut 82 km corridor is supposed to have 5.6 km long tunnel between New Ashok Nagar in Delhi to Sahibabad in Uttar Pradesh and an underground station at Anand Vihar.