SC reserves order on plea challenging ambulance running policy

The Supreme Court on Monday reserved its order in a petition filed by NGOs challenging the policy of running ambulance in states through public-private partnership.

Last Updated: Oct 25, 2010, 20:49 PM IST

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday reserved
its order in a petition filed by NGOs challenging the policy
of running ambulance in states through public-private
partnership in association with Emergency Management and
Research Institute (EMRI).

A bench headed by Chief Justice S H Kapadia reserved its
order after hearing all the parties.

The court was hearing a PIL filed by NGOs Ambulance
Acess Foundation India and Transparency in Contracts seeking a
direction to state governments to go for bidding rather than
opting for public-private partnership with Emergency
Management and Research Institute (EMRI).

EMRI was in controversy as the scam-hit IT firm Satyam
was its technology partner providing technology.

The NGOs have questioned the signing of MoUs by state
governments with EMRI for running the ambulance service which
they claim would cause a huge burden on state exchequer.

The NGOs, in their PIL, had sought a transparent and fair
process in awarding contracts for running ambulance services.

They have alleged the process of award of contract for
operating ambulance or emergency response service to EMRI
lacked transparency.

The petitioners alleged the private organisation is all
set to withdraw an estimated amount of Rs 3,800 crore from
public funds and get in control and possession of prime
government land in state capitals.

Earlier, the apex court had issued notices to the Centre
and governments of Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh,
Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Goa, Assam, Haryana,
Punjab, Karnataka, Maharashtra and EMRI.

It was alleged that the advertisements for the proposed
emergency services was so drafted that only EMRI could qualify
for entering into the contract.

PTI