HindustanTimes Tue,23 Dec 2014
Why is Guj govt silent on Modi's travel bills: activist
HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Ahmedabad, October 03, 2012
First Published: 23:14 IST(3/10/2012)
Last Updated: 17:52 IST(10/10/2012)

The nation's information watchdog, chief information commissioner (CIC), has given Sonia Gandhi a clean bill of health on her health travel bills.

But how big a travel bill did Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, who raised a storm about Gandhi's expenses, run up?

An RTI activist asked the question back in 2007 and the state government, she claims, is yet to answer it.

Vadodara Tripti Shah has now written to Modi, accusing his government of not providing details of the expenses he and his ministers incurred while travelling for women's conferences and public meetings ahead of the 2007 assembly polls.

"An RTI application dated 18-07-2007 was filed by me to your office…  Till today I have not received the information about the expenses incurred by you and other ministers for travelling to 27 places for these sammelans," Shah wrote to Modi on Tuesday.

"I agree with you that the Government of India should not hide information about personal foreign trip expenses incurred by the central government, if any, for Sonia Gandhi. I believe you have no choice but to agree with me that this is equally applicable to you and the government of Gujarat," the letter read.

Shah said in November 2007, she had received a letter from the general administration department, which said the CM had attended 27 public meetings of women but has incurred no travelling expenses.

"This is ridiculous and unbelievable, as it is known that you have travel to most of places by state helicopter or aircraft," Shah wrote.

Modi had raised questions on the costs incurred by the exchequer for Gandhi's foreign trips. The CIC has said Gandhi met the expenses on her own and has claimed no reimbursement from the government.

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