DoPT slams ministries for not disclosing tour details



New Delhi: Taking a strict view of non- compliance of its directive, the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) has asked central ministries to disclose tour details of their officials in public domain.

"It has come to the notice of this Department that some of the public authorities are not disclosing such information or are providing only partial information and are also not updating it regularly. It is again advised that all public authorities may strictly comply with the advisory," the DoPT said in an official memorandum issued yesterday.

In September last year, the DoPT had directed all central government ministries to make public details of foreign and domestic tours undertaken by ministers and senior officers.

The suo motu move was taken after central government departments received frequent applications under the Right to Information Act seeking details of official tours undertaken by ministers and other officials.

The decision to put the tour details online is in compliance with the RTI Act which mandates a public authority to provide as much information suo motu to public at regular intervals through various means of communications, a DoPT official said. As per the details put on the DoPT website, officials have spent Rs 5.30 crore in 18 visits to places like Switzerland, Zurich and Kuala Lumpur among others between October and December 2012.

Each central department has been directed to put the details including nature of the tour, places visited, period, number of people included in the official delegation and total cost of such travel undertaken by a minister or senior officer.

However, intelligence organisations, including RAW, IB, CBI and Enforcement Directorate, are exempted from the directive.

PTI