It cost over Rs 11 lakh to fly files for Mamata
New Delhi: Railway Minister Mamata
Banerjee`s prolonged absence from her ministry has cost the
exchequer more than Rs 11 lakh over a one-year period.
Expenses for travel of five officials between Delhi and
Kolkata to meet Mamata for clearing files have cost the
Railways Rs 11,23,550.
The officials in question are Officer on Special Duty to
Railway Minister Gautam Sanyal, Private Secretary Santanu
Basu, Executive Director (Public Grievance) J K Saha,
Additional PS S Ashok and APS Ratan Mukherjee.
While the airfares of Saha and Mukherjee could not be
furnished by the Railways, the total cost incurred for air
travel by the other three officials to Kolkata and back was Rs
8,73,946 from July 1, 2009 to June 30, 2010.
Besides, Railways had to shell out Rs 2,49,604 as TA/DA
to five officials for travelling to Kolkata to meet Mamata
during this period, an RTI reply has disclosed.
RTI activist S C Agrawal had sought information about the
expenses of officials to contact Mamata Banerjee and the cost
of the transportation of files between Delhi and Kolkata.
Branded as "absentee" Railway Minister by Opposition,
Mamata is being constantly accused of paying more attention to
her home state than to Railways.
However, Mamata had said in Parliament last week that her
absence from Delhi has not affected the functioning of her
ministry whose performance was the best "in last 50 years".
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