Team Blitz India
KOTTAYAM: The Kerala Government started issuing Poly Vinyl Chloride (PVC) cards for licence and RC (Registration Certificate), disregarding the Central Government’s direction to provide the respective documents in the form of smart cards.
The state also levied Rs 200, a fixed charge for smart cards as directed by the Centre, from the applicants while giving PVC cards, which cost only Rs 10 per piece.
The smart card had a chip embedded in it, which included complete details of the vehicle and the owner. Though holograms and QR codes are also available on PVC cards, out-andout data on the vehicle and its owner are not available.
B Ganesh Kumar, the newly designated Transport Minister, has asked for the files about the pact inked with the Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) for issuing PVC cards and the subcontract entered into by the PSU with the private firm. The move followed a suspicion that corruption was involved in granting the contracts.
The State Government entered into the first contract for making smart cards with the Indian Telephone Industries (ITI) 22 years ago. However, the ITI had entrusted the task to a Delhi-based consortium. The PVC card at a rate of Rs 198 and smart card at Rs 395 were agreed upon in this contract However, the Government later struck down the contract, and the consortium approached the High Court. Though the succeeding governments entered into contracts with different firms for making the card, the court stopped the contracts on the arguments raised by the consortium.