Thursday, October 11, 2007

Holiday, Pleasure and a lil bit of "STUDY" !!!!

When our politicians and bureaucrats go on foreign "STUDY" tours, I often wonder if there is any study happening at all. After all their trips are funded by you and me, by public money.

As usual my instinct said, why not file an RTI on this. I filed an RTI with the General Administration Department (GAD), AP secretariat seeking information on how much public money was spent on foreign tours of MLA's, MP's, Politicians and bureaucrats from 2004 to 2007.

As usual, there was no reply. With my ever increasing pressure on the secretariat on other matters pertaining to RTI, they woke up. After about 3 months, they gave me part of the info (only for All india service officers). Would you believe, One secretariat employee came driving on a motor bike from secretariat to hi tech city to give me the 40 page information. (RTI works u see)

In the mean time, i had an hour long interesting discussion with a senior IAS officer Mr Krishnaiah in the GAD. He was happy that i am doing this. But expressed his inability in expediting the process of giving the information. Anyways coming to the point of discussion

Some interetsing statistics follow,

Year: 2004

Number of Officers who went on foreign 'STUDY' tours: 22
Public Money Spent: Rs 63,11,820

Year: 2005

Number of Officers who went on foreign 'STUDY' tours: 40
Public Money Spent: Rs 76,93,562

Year: 2006

Number of Officers who went on foreign 'STUDY' tours: 91
Public Money Spent: Data not available with GAD

Year: 2007 (till June)

Number of Officers who went on foreign 'STUDY' tours: 27
Public Money Spent: Data not available with GAD

Whats Interesting?

1. 'STUDY' tours generally happen in summer and that too mostly to european countries where the climate is cooler ( Perfect Holiday destination)
2. No one knows what they study in a few days (apart from the site seeing )

So all in all, A good holiday , lot of pleasure and a little bit 'STUDY' may be!!!!

Information for MLA's,MP's , Corporation chairmans etc is still to come. That will have mamy more interesting facts. I am much more curious to know what the politicians could have "STUDIED" on the "STUDY" tour !!!

The delay seems inevitable. One more hearing in the state commission. Some more arguments. Hopefully some fine and compensation.


Use RTI !!!

JAIHIND