THE Congress Government of Delhi is not only committing bungling of hundreds of crore in the name of Commonwealth Games but also playing with the security of sportspersons. The state Government awarded tender of Rs 99 crore for Tetra Handsets to a private company which does not fulfill the conditions of original tender in spite of objections from Central Vigilance Department.
The tender was awarded to Motorola in a very clever way whereas this Company has been given contract of Rs 230 crore surreptitiously. This contract has been awarded disregarding the security rules of Defence Department, Telecommunication Department and Home Department. Due to this the security of Commonwealth Games has become vulnerable. This may also open the door for terrorists to strike at their will.
It is to be mentioned that the Tetra communication system is not the latest communication system of the world used in the most sensitive cases. In the age of E-system more modern systems in comparison to the Tetra have been introduced in the world but since a big corruption was to be committed, the Tetra system will be used in the October 2010 Commonwealth Games ingnoring the latest security systems. During the Beijing Olympic Games the Tetra communication system jammed many times and it happened when this system was tested years before the games in China.
Only six months are left for the Games. The Motorola Company has been given orders to supply 10000 Tetra handsets and for making other arrangements through the process of tender. It will take at least six months for the commissioning, installing, constructing main antenna tower, constructing sub-towers, establishing police command, police control system etc. The people who shall be supplied most sensitive Tetra handsets shall take at least three months for the training. Since it is a complicated technology, it will essentially take at least ten months in its installation and activisation. And according to experts, the entire system may fail at the most crucial time
Before using the new technology, its large scale and continuous rehearsal is essential. China had installed Tetra voice system three years before the Beijing Olympics. Even after that it had to face problems during the games. If without testing and rehearsing, this system is handed over to new hands then any undesirable incident may happen during the Commonwealth Games. The Congress Government of Delhi will be fully responsible for it. Anti-India forces, terrorists, Maoists and Naxalites have been warning about disrupting the Games. The foreign intelligence agencies are also eying the Commonwealth Games in India and the security system. Some of the terrorist organisations have got latest electronic surveillance system. They are also eying India.
The security system which has been adopted for it has not been tested by the Scientific Analysis Group (SAG) of Defence Department. It may be mentioned that SAG is an important institution of Defence Ministry which firstly conducts tests of the technology to be adopted for foreign purchases or security system. SAG checks how much the system is safe for India and whether the system fulfills all the security requirements or not. In the case of Tetra not only SAG was disregarded but the Defence Ministry was also kept in dark. The main reason is the bungling of crores of rupees in the tender process. Had the Tetra system been offered for testing then it might have failed in the preliminary stage itself.
The condition given in the original tender for this system, are not being fulfilled by the Motorola Company. Tetra handsets should be complete with Java. The Motorola Tetra handsets do not fulfill the condition of Java system. This is the reason why the conditions of the tenders were relaxed and the company gave a live display of the systems of handsets before the experts. It may be mentioned that the Delhi Government had given the work of inviting tenders for Tetra to TCIL Company. This Company has commercial relations with HCL and Motorola company. Hence awarding tender to Motorola Company is not beyond question.
According to original tender Delhi Government had to be supplied only 4000 handsets for seven years. Other 4000 Tetra handsets had to be supplied only for two months for the Commonwealth Games. Its real cost is very less. The Government’s IT Secretary had informed the press persons that total number of 10,000 Tetra units shall be supplied before the games and 7000 units shall be supplied after the games. This way the total comes to 17,000 Tetra units whereas the work of only 99 crore rupees has been awarded to the Motorola in the tender. Actually work of about 230 crore has been awarded. This is like throwing the dust in the eyes of the people.
Its astonishing aspect is that when the company supplying Tetra system was asked about the guarantee of its security system it said that ‘we have the guarantee of the security of this system. We have developed a new system which is impregnable.’ The question is that if you go to the market to purchase a lock and ask the shopkeeper about the guarantee of the security of the lock then in place of demonstrating the security of the lock the shopkeeper will tell that I take the guarantee. It means the lock has three keys. Two keys are given to the customer and the third retained by the shopkeeper. In such a situation the security of the house of the person purchasing the lock will be doubtful. The company supplying Tetra system says that we do not violate the rules of commercial secrets. We cannot disclose the secrets of the security of Tetra system to the Government of India, Delhi Government, Defence Ministry, Home Ministry, Communication Ministry, etc.
In view of the seriousness of the issue in national interest a CBI enquiry into the whole issue of purchase of this security system for the Commonwealth Games is must. More importantly, an Expert Committee, comprising both Government and non-Government scientists, must be formed immediately and asked to go into the Motorola system.
The Government of NCT of Delhi issued the tender in April 2009 for the Tetra based secure communication system to enable mobile communications within and between different municipal and security agencies, covering most of Delhi, to ensure safe conduct of the Commonwealth Games 2010. The project was awarded to Motorola. Suddenly, government relaxed three parameters of the original tender rules. This relaxation was after all the bids had been submitted and evaluation started. The whole exercise of procurement of the Secured Communication Network (TETRA) by the Government of NCT of Delhi, is full of controversies and procurement procedure was carried out in a hush hush manner by throwing all rules to the wind.