Goa minister slams own govt over maintenance contract for Aguada Jail

Referring to the Goa Tourism Development Corporation’s proposal for the selection of the bidder for the contract, Micheal Lobo, who is the BJP MLA from Calangute — the constituency in which the monument falls — said, “I smell a rat.”

Goa minister Micheal Lobo on Wednesday flagged hisconcerns over a contract for maintaining and operating the renovated Aguada Jail, expected to be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on December 19. He also said that Tourism Minister Manohar Ajgaonkar, his Cabinet colleague, had been “misguided”.

Speaking to reporters, Lobo said the matter was placed before the state Cabinet but was deferred after he raised an objection over handing the monument “lock, stock and barrel” over to a contractor.

Referring to the Goa Tourism Development Corporation’s proposal for the selection of the bidder for the contract, Lobo, who is the BJP MLA from Calangute — the constituency in which the monument falls — said, “I smell a rat.”

“The monument has to be with us. As the government, we are its custodians,” Lobo said, adding that Chief Minister Pramod Sawant had assured him that he would look into the matter, while Ajgaonkar said that he would get the issue resolved.

Reacting to Lobo’s claims, Ajgaonkar said the monument was handed over to a private party, noting that three players had emerged through tenders issued for the contract, and the highest bidder would be selected.

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