K- Phone too to be brought under scanner


TJ Sreejith

The interventions of PricewaterhouseCoopers will be investigated after the government decided to investigate all IT appointments.

Kochi: Kerala government’s K- Phone project is also under the scanner as the investigation in the gold smuggling case has reached government departments also. The interventions of PricewaterhouseCoopers will be investigated after the government decided to investigate all IT appointments.

There are allegations that M Sivasankar tried to place one of the accused in the case, Swapna Suresh, on top of the company. The plan was to appoint Swapna Suresh and others for really high salaries without creating any additional government positions. PwC was the project management unit of K-Phone company, which was envisaged to provide internet services in the state. PwC was removed from the consultancy position of E-mobility project after it was involved in controversies. Similarly, it would have to be removed from its association with K-Phone as well.

The state government has 2 percent share in K-Phone company, formed by Kerala State IT Infrastructure Limited (KSITIL) and KSEB. KSITIL and KSEB has 49 percent share each in the company. KSITIL is in charge of the company ever since it was formed.

PwC was made the project management unit of K-Phone without any tender procedures by KSITIL, in which M Sivasankar was the chairman.

Sivasankar was also the chairman of the committee, which was in charge of appointing people to the project management unit. As per the report prepared by PwC, Rs 3.32 crores was the estimated expenditure of the administrative system as well as its high level officials.

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