Govt revokes suspension of officer mired in wireless scam despite pending inquiry
IMPHAL | Jan 5
Manipur government had suspended Telecom SP, Sh Dwijamani Singh in April last year following a report submitted by a Special Investigation Team that there has been lapses in procuring wireless sets for Manipur Police department. Despite a departmental inquiry pending against the officer, the government has revoked the suspension order on January 3.
According to a notification number 9/47/(I)2018-(MPTO/RV)A made by the Home department on January 3 and signed by deputy secretary (Home) Rashini Yengkhom, saying that the government has revoked the suspension. Another order came out on January 4 by the same officer saying that the following shall be added to the prior order, it said, “This is subject to outcome of pending departmental inquiry of Deputy Inspector General of police (Telecom), Sh Dwijamani Singh.”
It may be mentioned that this paper in its December 30th edition of 2017 carried a news article alleging that Manipur police department was supplied with Chinese made communication devices which are currently banned in India. As part of the police modernization effort, the Ministry of Home Affairs had sanctioned an amount of Rs 3 crore for procuring wireless sets for the Manipur police department. The grant was given for the years 2013-14 and 2014-15. The sanction was in order to procure 150 numbers of hand-held wireless sets, 175 mobile sets for police vehicles and 12 numbers of repeaters (signal amplifiers for radio sets).
The supply order was specified for each device to have Digital Mobile Radio (DMR) technology and having a 2 slot Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) with a 12.5 Khz bandwidth. The technology is one of the latest in wireless communication and provides a clear digital sound over the radio set. The DMR manufacturing has a protocol and every manufacturer using this technology should first be approved by the European Telecom Standard Institute (ETSI).
The SP (Telecom and Administration) Sh Dwijamani was the consignee then and also the chairman of the line committee whose mandate was to check if the specifications of the ordered wireless sets match the ones supplied. The IG (Administration) was C Doungel and the amount of Rs. 3 crore was paid to an Indian company and the wireless sets were procured in 2015.
An initial test was conducted for the supplied equipment and it was found that the company making the hand held wireless set was not APCOM but a company called HYTERA. The 150 numbers of hand held sets was to have a specification of P-318 but had a specification of PD-788 also which is totally different. The other 175 numbers of mobile sets for vehicles was also made by HYTERA company.
Further, the 12 number of Repeaters (signal amplifiers) were also found to be made by a company called GWANGJAO, a Chinese company and not by APCOM. The requisite of 2 slot TDMA having 12.5 Khz and a 16 colour code which was to have a good digital sound was the specified order for the repeaters. Instead the supplied material was completely different and found to be sub-standard.
The GWANGJAO repeaters operated on 4 slots and on 6.25 Khz Frequency Division Multiple Access (FDMA)- this technology is different from TDMA and has one colour code only. This 4 slot technology makes communication nearly inaudible over the radio sets as transmission data gets lost over time. Moreover, the Ministry of Communication does not give license for using the four slot frequency spectrum technology in India. The police and the army, the para-military uses only the licensed 2 slot frequency wireless sets. At present, Manipur police department is using this un-licensed product.
The matter was probed by a Special Investigation Team comprising of ADGP Anandprakash, C Arthur IAS and IGP (Administration) then, Soibam Ibocha and a departmental inquiry is still pending.
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