The present day public procurements are largely empirical and at best partly scientific. Many irregularities, breach of fiduciary duty and inaccuracy in bids are very frequently reported in the press and the beneficiaries of public works namely common people and law abiding citizens have become vulnerable and have always been at the receiving end. System improvements are far less than necessary and value for public expenditure is not conspicuous especially in public procurements. A clear road map for ensuring transparency and accountability is presented in this paper.
An element of irrationality is built-in inadvertently in bidding processes often leading to delays, losses and unwarranted disputes in the form of arbitrations. This unhealthy trend in public procurements should be taken seriously unless it will result in catastrophes in project management. In Indian Railways which is a major infrastructure undertaking in India only two criteria namely 35% criteria and 150% criteria are to be fulfilled in any procurement and it can be commented that still the practice is in a primitive stage. An attempt has been made to expand these criteria in a practical and highly rational perspective so that the public works are proposed, processed and executed by scientific methods so that the objectives are not compromised. As many as 14 criteria which are taken into account in majority of developed countries are enlisted, analysed and adopted in a customised railway perspective. A rational model to evaluate bids is proposed which takes into account the bid value quoted in relation to estimated value of the project to bring out relative merits of the bid value. The evaluation of this model is compared with the one published earlier and the model evaluation reveals that the proposed model is more pragmatic.