Panaji: Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Monday promised an inquiry into alleged fraud in the sale of scrap generated by the breaking of a ship that had run aground at Candolim beach.
Parrikar said in the Legislative Assembly that inquiry would be conducted into sale of scrap worth Rs 14 crore by Arihant Shipping Company, which had won the tender to break up MV River Princess, the ship.
BJP MLA Michael Lobo, who raised the issue, demanded suspension of agreement signed by the government with it.
The company was yet to remove the shipwreck, he said.
Tourism Minister Dilip Parulekar said the tender was allotted during the tenure of previous Congress-led government.
Parrikar, intervening in the discussion, assured that there would be an inquiry. "Prima facie there seems to be malpractice in the sale of scrap. We will inquire," he said.
The company would not be paid till it clears away the entire wreck from the seabed, he said, adding "the tender is based on no cure, no pay basis. So if they fail to remove the entire ship, they won`t be paid".
In a written reply in the House, Parulekar confirmed that a substantial portion of wreck was still on the seabed as per the `magnetometer` and diving reports from National institute of Oceanography (NIO).
"The wreck debris is approximately 180 metres in length and 40 metres in breadth," it said.
The ship ran aground at Candolim on the night of June 6, 2000. Last year, Arihant began the work to break it up.