Unconfirmed reports indicate that the board of trustees of Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) decided to award the Rs 8,200-crore fourth container terminal project as a single contract instead of the earlier proposal to split it into two.
The board of trustees decided this at a recent meeting. It also decided to issue a tender for the much delayed project in the next few days.
On November 22, 2012, the board decided to split the project into two contracts in order to attract bidders.
It may be noted that the decision to split the project was taken during the tenure of the erstwhile Chairman of the port L Radhakrishnan. He left the office on 13 May to become the principal home secretary of Kerala.
It is learnt that the decision of splitting the project was taken by only seven members of the board —all of them government nominees—out of a 16-member board.
The numbers are fewer because the government is yet to reconstitute the board of JN port after the term of the earlier board ended on March 31. According to procedure, the board of trustees can take decisions with the participation of at least six members who will make up the quorum.
The project is delayed because the consortium of PSA International Pte, which bagged the project in the earlier tender, failed to carry out the work.