After controversy erupted over setting up of infrastructure for covid care centre in the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre (BIEC), the BBMP has decided to purchase six “reusable” items from the vendors at a cost of Rs 7,500 per set. The civic body will take 19 non-reusable items at a monthly rent of Rs 6,500 per set. The new arrangement is expected to save over several crores for the government.
The modification in the agreement with the four vendors was made after Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa blasted officials for spending Rs 800 per bed per patient as rent in BIEC’s covid care centre where 10,000 bed sets are being readied. Bangalore Mirror had exposed the scam on July 7.
According to BBMP’s original plan, it would have spent Rs 24 crore per month as rent towards bed sets. Under the new plan, the BBMP will spend only Rs 4.23 crore a month other than an initial expenditure of Rs 7.32 crore.
The Chief Minister has directed stringent action against officials responsible for entering into such a costly arrangement with the contractors.
Having proved unsuccessful to arrange for more beds in the city for covid management, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike’s (BBMP) new mantra for patients with mild symptoms seems to have become this: Remain at home. As BBMP’s rental agreement with vendors providing 10,000 beds at the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre (BIEC) got embroiled in controversy, even that plan was delayed.
Over the last two days, more than 3,500 people tested positive for Covid-19. The number of empty beds in all the seven Covid Care Centres across the city are just 203. The BBMP has managed to create facilities for about 1,000 beds in Bangalore University hostel only after Wednesday evening.
“There is no need to panic. Since we are accommodating only non-critical patients, these patients can remain at home and isolate themselves from others,” Sarfaraz Khan, in-charge of Covid Care Centres in Bengaluru said.
Currently, around 2,171 beds are available for patients in seven centres including in Haj Bhavan, Sri Sri Ravishankar Ayurveda Hospital, GKVK campus and Koramangala Indoor stadium but almost all are fully occupied.