Vishnu S Warrier
Founder, Lex-Warrier Foundation
Government organizations procure a wide variety of goods and services and undertake execution of works in pursuance of their duties and responsibilities. Government procurement or public procurement is the procurement of goods, services and construction on behalf of a public authority, such as a government agency. It is necessary because governments cannot produce all the inputs for the goods they provide themselves. Thus, the Government has the right to enter into contract with anybody, though he may not be the highest bidder. Public interest is the prime consideration in the matter of the tender invited by the State and it should see that, it gets the best price for the works entrusted by it to private individuals. On the same time, Article 14 of the Indian Constitution prohibits the State from arbitrarily choosing a contractor at its will and pleasure.
It has to act reasonably, fairly and in public interest in awarding procurement contracts. At the same time, no person can claim a fundamental right to carryon business with Government. The object of inviting tenders and entrusting the work are three-fold. Firstly, to locate or select highly proficient or select high proficient and competent handling agent, who will be able to execute the work as per the terms and conditions of the tender notification to the satisfaction of the State without incurring any delay or default in the execution of the work. Secondly, to get the work done at a reasonably low cost and to the best advantage of the State. Thirdly, to give an opportunity to all the eligible persons or intending tenderers to submit their tenders.
Keywords: Public procurement, e-tendering, tendering process in India, CVC guidelines on tender, law relating to tendering in India