Gujarat chief minister may have created a storm by raising the issue of travel expenses of Congress President Sonia Gandhi’s foreign trips but the state government is itself lethargic in disclosing the details of Narendra Modi's travel expenses under RTI.
A leading RTI activist in Vadodara, Tripti Shah has written to the Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, accusing his government of not providing details of expenditure made by Modi and his ministers in organising women conferences and public meetings ahead of 2007 assembly polls.
“An RTI application dated July 18, 2007 was filed by me to your office asking the details about expenses of Gujarat government for organising “Women’s Empowerment Sammelans” in 27 places of Gujarat, just before 2007 state assembly election. Till today I have not received the information about traveling expenses incurred by you and other ministers for traveling to 27 places for these sammelans,” Shah said in a letter to Modi on Tuesday.
She added, “I agree with you that Government of India should not hide the information about personal foreign trip expenses incurred by Central Government if any for Ms. 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 also.”
According to her, all efforts made by her to get details of the expenses using transparency law has failed because the state administration under Modi has stubbornly refused to part with the details sought.
“In November 2007, I had received a letter from the General Administration Department (GAD) stating that the CM had attended 27 public meetings of women but made no expense in traveling. This is ridiculous and unbelievable as it is known that you have travel to most of places by state helicopter or aircraft,” she added.