Activist demands recovery of cost incurred on trips of president’s relatives
Data received by in response to an application filed under the Right to information (RTI) Act by activist Subhash Chandra Agrawal has shown that former President Pratibha Patil, was accompanied by her friends and relatives on several foreign tours as president.
Her foreign trips had hit media headlines when RTI replies revealed that she had undertaken 14 foreign trips covering 24 countries during her five-year term costing over Rs. 225 crore. Following directions from the Central Information Commission (CIC), the President Secretariat has provided complete details of persons accompanying her on the trips in India and abroad. It has been revealed that she took friends and relatives, other than her spouse, on these trips.
The applicant has called these trips as pleasure trips made in name of official trips which is a gross misuse of taxpayers’ hard-earned money by the head of the nation. He has demanded that if Pratibha Patil does not reimburse the money on her own, the government should recover the same from her post-retirement pension and if needed, through other recovery proceedings. For example:
- During visit to United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah) and the Syrian Arab Republic (Damascus and Aleppo) between 21st and 30 November 2010, Dr Gajendra Singh Patil (younger brother) and Randhirsingh Patil (nephew) accompanied her.
- During visit to Mauritius between 24th April and 28 April, Rajendra Singh Shekhawat (Son), Manjari Shekhawat (daughter-in-law), Jyoti Rathore (daughter), Prithvi Singh Shekhawat (grandson) and Vedika Rathore (grand-daughter) alongwith 24 people from the media accompanied her.
An earlier new about her travel costs just before her retirement is available at: http://www.rtifoundationofindia.com/what-quantum-money-spent-president%E...