The civic body has floated a tender at an estimated cost of Rs 15.26 crore for the upkeep of the flightless birds for the next three years
Mumbai: The Mumbai Congress has opposed Rs 15 crore tender issued by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for the upkeep of seven penguins at Byculla zoo in Mumbai.
The civic body has floated a tender at an estimated cost of Rs 15.26 crore for the upkeep of the flightless birds for the next three years. The amount will be spent on maintenance and air-conditioning of penguin exhibition and quarantine enclosures, life support and electrical system, veterinary officers’ service and supply of fish food for penguins.
Opposition leader Ravi Raja from Congress said that the whole idea behind the tender is to favour certain contractors, even though BMC’s own doctors can do the job.
The current contract was awarded to the Highway Constructions at a cost of Rs 11.5 crore in September 2018 for three years. The BMC had levied a fine of Rs 1.4 crore on the company after it found out that the firm had falsely claimed it had a joint venture with a company having expertise in developing support systems for aquatic life.
Mayor Kishori Pednekar has defended the expenditure of Rs 15 crore saying it will be no compromise on the upkeep of penguins. “These birds require a different climate as they are from the cold region. They have attracted big crowds due to which revenues of Byculla zoo have also increased,” she said.
The penguin enclosure is Shiv Sena leader Aditya Thackeray’s pet project. As part of its revamp project, the Byculla zoo had bought eight penguins from Seoul in South Korea on July 26, 2016 at a cost of Rs 45 crore. One had died two months after being brought to the zoo.