New Delhi: The Prime Minister`s Office
has been directed by the CIC to provide details of
expenditure incurred on PM`s relatives accompanying him on
visits abroad, rejecting the argument by the PMO that it did
not have such records.
The Prime Minister`s Office (PMO) and Protocol
Division of the External Affairs Ministry have both stated
that they do no have these records with an RTI application
shuttling between the two departments.
The issue was raised before the Central Information
Commission (CIC) which directed the PMO to collect details
about the expenses incurred on the foreign travels undertaken
by the relatives of the Prime Minister from different
departments and provide it to the RTI applicant within 20
working days from the receipt of its order.
The applicant, Ayub Ali of Shahjahanpur in Uttar
Pradesh, through his RTI application sought to know the
details of foreign travels undertaken by the relatives of the
Prime Minister and rules regarding their travel and expenses
incurred on them.
The Prime Minister`s Office in reply to the
application said that foreign travel of the Prime Minister`s
relatives with the Prime Minister is as per convention and
there are no specific rules regarding them.
It gave only partial details and did not give expenses
incurred on such visits, Ali claimed in his plea.
During the hearing by the transparency panel, the
Prime Minister`s Office told Chief Information Commissioner
Satyananda Mishra that they do not have records of expenditure
incurred on the foreign visits undertaken by the Prime
The officials said they had requested the Protocol
Division of the External Affairs Ministry to furnish the
details sought in the RTI application but they have returned
the application saying the information needs to be furnished
by the PMO.
"The only issue which remains unresolved in this case
till now is the expenditure incurred on the visits by the
relatives of the Prime Minister.
"We think the appellant (Ayub Ali) had a right to get
this information and, therefore, direct the Central Public
Information Officer to obtain this information from whosoever
holds it and provide it to the appellant within 20 working
days from the receipt of this order," Chief Information
Commissioner Satyananda Mishra said.