Thursday, December 13, 2012

‘Rs10.42 cr spent on buses for Sadbhavna’

Reveal replies to RTI pleas filed by former CM Suresh Mehta
DNA Correspondent
The state government spent Rs10.42 crore as payment for 7,270 buses hired from the Gujarat State Road Transport Corporation (GSRTC) for chief minister Narendra Modi’s Sadbhavana Mission. This has been revealed by replies to Right to Information (RTI) applications filed by former Gujarat chief minister Suresh Mehta.
However, it was not easy for Mehta (who is now a member of Gujarat Parivartan Party) to get this information from the state government.
“I had to file several applications, reminders and fresh applications addressed to all district collectors. I am yet to receive information from nine places,” said Mehta.
“It is surprising that the collector of Gandhinagar has written to me that as my question seeking information is not in proper format, he cannot reply to it,” the GPP leader said.
Mehta was replying to queries from journalists about chief minister Narendra Modi’s allegation that the central government had not provided information under RTI about the expenses incurred on Sonia Gandhi’s foreign trips.
“Modi should look at his own record. I have filed at least 112 applications for information on expenses incurred on Sadbhavna Mission but I am yet to get a reply from all government departments. I have, however, received information on the GSRTC buses hired by the state government to transport crowds to various places,” Mehta said.
According to the RTI replies, the state government hired 7,270 buses and spent Rs10.42 crore for them to to the GSRTC. “I am yet to get information from seven district collectors and two municipal corporations in this regard,” Mehta said.
Narendra Modi had held Sadbhavna Mission fasts at 33 places across the state between October 2011 and February 2012.