Chandra Naskar - TMC – toured 6 cities – 11 days – Rs. 8.62 Lakh
Banerjee – TMC – toured 14 cities – 19 days – Rs. 62.88 Lakh
Mahajan –BJP – toured 8 cities – 12 days – Rs. 16.99 Lakh
K S Vijayan – DMK – toured 6 cities – 9 days – Rs. 5.75 Lakh
Singh Chauhan – BSP – toured 6 cities – 11 days – Rs. 20.31 Lakh
It is season of austerity;
otherwise, each individual figure could have easily been in crores.
(The list is not exhaustive, there are many more.)
it comes to splurging on taxpayers’ money, and that too, in a poor and
developing democratic set-up (and not society), no country can beat the
grandeur and opulence of the Indian politicians and their entourage; they are
so thick-skinned and hard-working with their imbecile ethos that nothing
affects them. They are so shamelessly gaudy that they launch measures in the
name of the umbrella term ‘austerity’
telling us to be ready for higher prices and subsidy cuts while continue with
their lavish lifestyles on public exchequer’s money. That is why I define their
austerity as Austerectomy. (http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/06/austerectomy.html)
they continue to remind us that come what may they shall go on with their
rampant disregard to every socialist value in a poor democracy of few rich. They
say you make protests, we are not bothered. So we come across yet another irresponsible
precedence by our esteemed lawmakers inhabiting the benches of the Indian
set of names and figures mentioned in the beginning are for the expenses
incurred on different study tours of the members of the parliamentary committees.
Obtained against the query of the RTI activist Subhash Chandra Agrawal, the information shows us yet another sham of
our politicians. It also tells us that all are similar under the skin when it comes
to save the skin evident from the unity shown by the parliamentarians across
the party-line in derailing the Lokpal Bill.
had written about one such study visit of parliamentary panel on agriculture
headed by CPM MP Basudeb Acharia in my ‘AUSTERITY HO!’ series (http://severallyalone.blogspot.in/2012/06/austerity-ho-iii.html).
Now this comprehensive information running into multiple pages details out very
bit about the study visits undertaken by the parliamentarians since the UPA-2
came into the office.
are many parliamentary standing committees to help the parliament steer clear
of the bumpy roads the complex work function of the Indian Parliament provides.
But as the RTI response reveals, objectives of many such study visits are
either irrelevant or not yet ‘revealed’. Members of these committees that
belong to the union ministries have chosen to stay in ultra-luxury hotels like Le
Meridien, Leela Kempenski, Taj Bengal, Taj Krishna, Hotel Trident, Holiday Inn,
Lalit Grand Palace, Taj Vivanta and many more while the austerity spectacle put
into place asks them to be as economical as possible with the cost of the
visit. Also, the list of such hotels tells us the kind of places chosen as
study stimulators. It doesn’t matter if the places chosen had nothing to do
with the subject matter of the study. Let’s see what the Mail Today report writes
about the guidelines on tours of parliamentary panels. It says,
accommodation for the committee (members) and the officers shall be made in one
government guesthouse that includes guesthouses of PSUs, circuit house, MLA
hostel etc. Where a government guesthouse is not available or it is not
possible to accommodate the entire committee along with the officers in one
government guesthouse, arrangements may be made for the stay of the committee
and the officers in a government owned hotel. Where a government owned hotel is
not available, arrangements may be made for the stay of the committee members in
a good hotel befitting the status of a parliamentary committee. Arrangements
for the committee shall be dignified, but shall not be ostentatious.”
almost of the cities have circuit houses or good government accommodations (as defined above) we all know that. But
when every austerity move is launched with the clear intent of lip service, it
is idiocy to expect sincerity and honesty from a lot riding high on corruption
charges. It is no surprise that crores are easily wasted on pointless study
visits in just three years of the UPA-2. Who knows what is in store for the
extended periods but be ready for the expected shockers as the past trend says.
UPA government has been beating its drums about austerity since it came to the
power in 2004 but seldom looked practicing it. Its austerity bandwagon began
with denouncing NDA policies and took centre-stage during the global economic meltdown.
As the global economic situation remains volatile and India, too, is paying the
price of policy paralysis of the UPA-2, austerity continues to be a buzzword
for the politicians to do lip service and save skin. We have more than plenty
of examples to show it. I am not counting them here. Just google with ‘UPA sham
austerity’ and see the pages flowing.
report this week said that the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has
stopped giving travel grants for international conferences to its doctors after
directive from the central government. Remember this central government is the
same body that made the directive for the tour of the parliamentary committees.