Tripura MLA demands blacklisting of firms that supplied

Ruling BJP MLA in Tripura and former state health minister Sudip Roy Barman has demanded blacklisting of companies that had allegedly supplied “substandard” PPE kits and hand sanitiser to the state government.

Roy Burman, in a letter to Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb on Saturday, said, “Out of different categories of PPE kits totaling 9,000 as received by the State, only 914 PPE kits supplied by HIL were found to be appropriate & the rest were found to be permeable to liquid & such permeability is hazardous in COVID-19 treatment intervention.”

“The procured ”goggles” were found to be unable to provide the much-needed protective seal essential for the protection of the eyes. The 500 ml bottles of hand sanitiser ”Ventiz Clear All” were found to contain only 57.68% alcohol, much less than the required percentage,” Roy Burman said.

He said the frontline workers are bound to be vulnerable to COVID-19 if they use the kits and requested Deb to “blacklist those companies/traders who have provided such substandard materials”.

The legislator further alleged that he also found that “the process and disbursement of the allocation of funds for the persons stranded in other states” is in a mess.

“…there are a large number of stranded persons in actual who have not received single farthing assistance to date despite fulfilling all formalities. It is a matter of concern that it is not clear as to what mechanism has been adopted by the State Government to ascertain the genuineness of the claims made & reimbursement made to that effect.

“My observation in this aspect is that some vested persons are trying to tarnish the image of the Government & intentionally malign your noble & constructive efforts. May I, therefore, request you to refer this matter to Lokayukta, Tripura in reaching out to the root of the corrupt practice,” the letter stated.

Roy Barman, in the letter, also alleged that he had tried to speak to the chief minister and the chief secretary over the phone but did not get any response from either of them.

“I firmly believe you will give serious thought to all the issues being raised and issue directives to your chief secretary and other officials to respond to the call made by state legislators,” he said.

Roy Burman, a former Tripura Pradesh Congress Committee president, joined the BJP before the 2018 Assembly elections in the state and was sworn-in as the health minister in the BJP-IPFT government.

He was, however, removed from the post just after the Lok Sabha elections last year on the charge of “anti-party activity”.