New Delhi: Technology firm Wipro Ltd is likely to be awarded a contract to electronically link police stations nationwide and digitize criminal records for seamless flow of information in one of India’s largest e-governance projects.
The company emerged as the lowest bidder among eight finalists in the auction for the Rs2,000 crore Crime and Criminal Tracking Network and Systems (CCTNS) project, according to officials of the home ministry and the department of information technology (DIT).
“The final terms and conditions are being worked out. The contract could be announced as soon as within the next 10 days,” the DIT official said. This was confirmed by an official at the home ministry, which will oversee the project. Both spoke on condition of anonymity.
CCTNS is one of the 27 missions under the government’s National e-Governance Plan (NeGP), which was unveiled in 2006.
The project will digitally integrate at least 14,000 police stations as well as nearly 6,000 higher offices such as district police headquarters, commissionerates and state police headquarters. It will also link state crime record bureaux with the National Crime Record Bureau to create a database with real-time access.
This will allow any individual’s police record to be tracked from anywhere in the country within minutes. The system will also help manage the police force better and beef up national security, whose lapses have been repeatedly exposed by terrorist attacks in recent years, the officials said.
Wipro’s task will be to build a so-called core application software, or CAS, that all states will have to adopt. The initial contract for CAS is said to be around Rs40 crore, while each state will have to spend Rs60-70 crore to meet the requirements of the project.
Home minister P. Chidambaram recently said the CCTNS project must meet its 2012 completion deadline under the 11th Five-year Plan.
“Though we are still working on the timelines, Wipro will have to finish the project before a year,” said the home ministry official quoted above.
The official denied the ministry is rethinking the project due to some technical glitches in the tender submitted by Wipro, as claimed in a news report in the Business Standard on 30 April.
Wipro refused to confirm that it has won the project. “The process is on,” said Anand Sankaran, senior vice- president and business head— India and Middle East, for Wipro. “I think we should hold our horses for the moment and wait for the decision to come through.”
Tata Consultancy Services Ltd, Infosys Technologies Ltd and Tech Mahindra Ltd, Dublin-based technology firm Accenture Plc and French company Capgemini SA were among the other bidders for CCTNS.
The Nataional Institute for Smart Government, a joint venture between the government and IT industry lobby group Nasscom, is the consultant for the project.