Subsidised travel to legislators and staff costs over Rs 26 crores to the Karnataka government
Reply to an application filed under the Right to Information (RTI) Act has revealed the financial impact of the rent-a-cab service provided by the Karnataka government for legislators and secretariat staff. The secretariat offers the service of cars and mini-buses on rent to legislators and its staff in Bangalore for their personal / private work on ‘charges’. The reply has shown that during the last 10 years, the state government has spent Rs 26.5 crore on the service and has received merely Rs 2.24 crore from the users as charges.
The services are provided apart from the loan of Rs. 15 lakhs provided to the legislators to purchase a car. The reply shows that during the past ten years, the state government purchased 103 new cars, including SUVs, for Rs 10.81 crore. Furthermore, Rs 1.91 crore was spent on maintenance of vehicles, Rs 3.69 crore on fuel and Rs 10.06 crore on the driver’s salary.
The charges for the legislators are as under:-
· An Ambassador at Rs 4 per km
· An air-conditioned car at Rs 7 per km within city limits of BBMP
· An air-conditioned car at Rs 9 per km outside the city limits of BBMP
· A 19-seater mini bus at Rs 10 per km within the BBMP limits
· A 19 seater minibus at Rs 11 per km outside the city limits
In 10 years, the charges received are just Rs 2.24 crore which is even less than the amount spent on fuel.