Thursday, May 31, 2012

Roaming charges on mobile phones abolished

Cabinet approves new telecom policy


NEW DELHI, May 31, 2012

The Cabinet on Thursday approved a new telecom policy that proposes to abolish roaming charges on mobile phones and allow users to retain the same number across the country. File photo: V.V. Krishnan

The Cabinet on Thursday approved a new telecom policy that proposes to abolish roaming charges on mobile phones and allow users to retain the same number across the country. File photo: V.V. Krishnan

The Cabinet on Thursday approved a new telecom policy that proposes to abolish roaming charges on mobile phones and allow users to retain the same number across the country.

The Cabinet approved the National Telecom Policy (NTP) 2012, a senior minister told reporters after the meeting of the Cabinet.

NTP 2012 aims to provide free roaming to telecom users and allow them to retain their mobile number even outside their circles without having to pay any extra charge.

At present, users have to pay extra when they receive or make a call in a circle outside their home network, called roaming charges.

Also mobile number portability is not permitted outside circle.


Also read the related stories

மொபைல்போன் ரோமிங் கட்டணம் ரத்தாகிறது!

May 31, 2012 | Gadget Guru

புதிய தொலைதொடர்பு கொள்கைக்கு மத்திய அமைச்சரவை ஒப்புதல் வழங்கியுள்ளது. இதையடுத்து நாடுமுழுவதும் மொபைல்போன் சேவைக்கான ரோமிங் கட்டணம் ரத்தாகிறது.

Cabinet Approves No Roaming Charges in India

கடந்த ஆண்டுகளில் மொபைல்களில் ரோமிங் கட்டணங்கள் வசூலிக்கப்பட்டு வந்தது. ஆனால் இந்த ரோமிங் கட்டணம் ரத்து செய்யப்படும் என்று மத்திய தொலை தொடர்பு அமைச்சர் கபில் சிபில் தெரிவித்து இருக்கிறார்.

ஒரு மாநிலத்தில் பயன்படுத்த வேண்டிய சிம் கார்டை வேறொரு மாநிலத்தில் பயன்படுத்தினால் இதற்கு தனியாக ரோமிங் கட்டணம் வசூலிக்கப்பட்டு வந்தது. ஆனால் இந்த ரோமிங் கட்டணம் ரத்து செய்யப்படும் என்று மத்திய அமைச்சகம் இன்று கூறியிருக்கிறது.

தொலை தொடர்பு சம்மந்தமாக சில முக்கிய மாற்றங்களை இந்திய அரசு கொண்டு வரும் என்று எதிர்பார்க்கப்படுகிறது.

இது மட்டுமல்லாமல் 2020-ஆம் ஆண்டுக்குள் 100% சதவிகிதம் அகன்ற அலைவரிசை வசதி அனைவருக்கும் கிடைக்க வேண்டும் என்பதே இந்த புதிய தொலைதொடர்பு கொள்ளகையின் முக்கியத்துவம்.

மொபைல் கட்டண உயர்வு பற்றியே கேட்டு கொண்டிருந்த மக்களுக்கு, இந்த ரோமிங் கட்டணம் ரத்து செய்யப்படுவது சம்ந்தமான இந்த செய்தி நிச்சயம் சந்தோஷத்தை அளிப்பதாக இருக்கும்.


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

வடசென்னையில் கடலுக்குள் கவிழும் வீடு

வடசென்னையில் கடலுக்குள் கவிழும் வீடு..........

Maalaimalar epaper

High security number plates in Pondicherry by June end

New number plates in Pondy from Monday 

Express News Service

South India | Posted on Apr 02, 2012 at 08:09am IST

PUDUCHERRY: The process for fixing High Security Registration Plates (HSRP) on vehicles plying in the UT will begin on Monday. 

According to transport commissioner T Karikalan, HSRPs would be fixed on a few vehicles at a function to be held here between 3 pm and 4 pm in the presence of Chief Minister N Rangasamy, thereby kick-starting the process.

Vehicle owners will have to cover the cost of fixing the tamper- proof number plates.

The cost of the HSRPs, starting from `50 per plate, would depend on the size. The HSRPs would have a Unique Identity number, the registration number, chassis number, details of the owners and a hologram. The new number plates can only be fixed on the premises of the Transport Department. Hyderabad-based PROMUK Hoffmann International has entered into a contract with the UT administration to fix the HSRPs.

The process of fixing the tamper-proof HSRPs is expected to take 15 minutes per vehicle.

The Supreme Court had earlier ordered that the entire process in the UT be completed by June.


Also read the related stories

High security number plates in Pondy

March 20, 2012 by S.Prasad DC Puducherry

The transport department has set in motion the process of fixing High Security Registration Plates (HSRP) in all motor vehicles in the Union Territory.

From April 1, all vehicles registered with the transport department will have HSRP. The decision is in compliance with a Supreme Court order mandating all states to fully implement the scheme by April 30 for new vehicles and by June 15 for old vehicles.

“We will be filing an affidavit in the apex court on March 26 on the private firm that has been entrusted with the job of making high security registration plates here.

Promuck Hoffmann of Hyderabad was selected through a bidding process and the transport department has already allocated space within the RTO to enable the firm to set up the required infrastructure and manufacturing facilities to kick-start the process”, transport commissioner T. Karikalan told DC.

He said that the high security registration plates would be specially designed in chromium and aluminum and available in all regional transport offices in the Union Territory.

The number plates will carry unique identification numbers, holograms and digital stickers with hot stamping which will give complete information about the vehicle.

The plates will be attached with snap locks which cannot be opened or removed by anyone else. It can only be broken and has to be fixed again at the RTOs, he said.


Also download the below mentioned "Application for Fixing HSRP" and to fill-up the same and to submit the same before the RTO Office, Pondicherry alongwith the FOUR enclosures as detailed in the Footnote of this Application.
Also read the related Notifications issued by the Pondicherry Transport Department

Notification Sources: 

Other related Notifications of Transport Department

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Facts about Mullaiperiyar Dam

MULLAIPERIYAR DAM - from the author of the blog

More than 100 years ago....."I was  twelve years old. It was morning 5 o'clock. Suddenly I  wake up  hearing some sound outside our  house. People were shouting,cheering and running. I could still remember some words they were shouting "Water is running through our village!!!... it is a new river!!! come on lets go and see!!!". I also woke up and ran along with the crowd carrying my two year old sister".I  could not believe my eyes. I saw a river,! Totally a new river!!! A very big river !!! People were diving into the river. All were looking happy and excited and praising an english name  'john'. They were talking " This river is coming from the top of the hill and running more than 100 miles.From now onwards we can cultivate paddy(rice) ."   My grandma was telling this story. The place is Kambam village in Madurai district of  Tamilnadu State, India.

The story behind the construction of the Dam

John Pennycuick works in the British Army in India. One day, when he was going through the geographical map of the above area, he saw a big  river at the top of the hill (2890 feet above sea level). 

The river (called as Periyar River)  was going waste through mountains and finally ended in  the sea. He thought  "If ever we could divert the river in the opposite direction, millions of people will be benefited. He worked out the logic like this:  " If we stopped the flow of river by building a dam, then ,  water level of the river will increase and it will automatically flow through the opposite direction.See the images of river before and after the construction of the Dam. 

But, he observed one more hinderence; a small mountain. He has to make a hole of 6000 feet through this mountain. He submitted his proposal for construction of dam as well as making hole to the British Government.(Note : the same idea was there for the Captain-cum-engineer Caldwell in 1808 but he dropped this idea thinking tunneling is not feasible. Before Caldwell, in 1778, Ramnad Raja also thought of  diverting the water by constructing a dam. But, because of financial constraints, he could not proceed further ) 

See the images below which show the view of the River before and after the construction of Dam.

Mullaiperiyar river  before construction of dam

Mullaiperiyar river  after construction of dam

The british government sanctioned Rs.7500,000 (about 150,000 dollars) and the work commenced in 1893. When more than 50% work is completed, there was continuous rain and the dam was fully washed away.(Note: To construct a dam across a running river, you have to  divert the water in some other route. For that you have to make arrangements. These arrangements were washed away by rain)

British govt refused to allot any more fund for this work. As John Pennycuick is also a member in  Madras Legislative Council  he was more attached to the people of that State. When the govt refused fund, he went back to England and sold all his properties and using that money he completed the dam in December 1895. Now 2.17 lakh acres (68,000 hectares) of land is benefited by this dam.


The Dam is situated in the place of Kerela State while the River is in Tamilnadu State.  See the above  image of the dam again. If you increase the water level more, tamilnadu will get benefit by getting more water. If  water level is permitted to lower down, then kerela will get benefit by releasing more water through the dam. Hence, this water-level problem went to court. Court ordered(in 2006) a water level of 142 feet.     Kerela govt allows  the level of 136 feet on dam safety grounds 

Technical Details of the Periyar Dam

1. This type of Dams are called as Gravity Dams.
2. Gravity Dam means, these dams are stable mainly because of Force of Gravity.
3. Height of periyar dam is 176 feet.
4. Length of the dam is 1200 feet.
5.Thickness at the base is 138 feet.
6.Thickness at the top is 12 feet
7. Materials used for construction of Dam: (sugar+calcium oxide=mortar),limestone.

Profile of John Pennycuick

1. Date of Birth: 15 Jan 1841
2. Pennycuick trained in Addiscombe Military  College
3. Pennycuick Joined in Royal Engineers in 1858
4. Pennycuick came to India in 1860
5. He worked as Cheif Engineer in indian PWD from 1890 to 1896.
6. He was appointed as a member of Madras Legislative Council in 1893
7. Pennycuick is also a faculty member of Madras University
8. His hobby is playing cricket.
9. He constructed the Mullai periyar dam (earlier called as Periyar Dam)
10. The dam reesrvoir is  called as Periyar-thekkady Reservoir.

Mullai periyar dam as seen in google maps

John Pennycuick who constructed mullai-periyar dam

Close up look of Mullai periyar dam which has now become a dispute between two states


 Mullai periyar dam


Mullai periyar dam during construction in 1887

Mullai periyar dam in 1895

Mullai periyar another view

Diagram which explains the conflict between Kerala and Tamil Nadu governments
If more water is allowed towards kerala's Idukki dam, then tamilnadu will get less water for irriguation. If less water goes to Idukki dam, they cannot generate electricity. Hence the dispute.

The red color block  shown in this diagram is  the new proposed mullai periyar dam kerala govt is going to construct(this information is as per tamilnadu PWD engineers.)

The kerala govt says, tamilnadu will get the water from the new dam. But tamilnadu PWD engineers say that if the new dam is built, tamilnadu could  not get water by citing the above diagram. Both state people are completely interdependent on each other. It is not like the relation between Tamilnadu  and  Karnataka (they are loosely connected). Hence an amicable solution becomes a must for the welfare of both the sides.

image of idukki dam in kerala. This dam is called as Arch Dam. The capacity of this dam is more than 4 times that of Mullaiperiyar Dam.CLICK ON THE IMAGE TO ENLARGE

A video made by  the tamilnadu PWD engineerson mulllaiperiyar dam conflict.

What is the stand of Tamilnadu Government (as on December 2011)

The Mullai Periyar Dam is a gravity dam built in 1886- 1895 with stone masonry and lime surkhi concrete. Gravity dams use their weight to resist the water pressure and other external forces like wave pressure, earthquake forces etc. for the reservoir to remain stable. The Periyar Lease deed between the Maharaja of Travancore and Madras Presidency with effect from 1.1.1886 for a period of 999 years was executed on 29.10.1886 for diversion of waters to the Madras Presidency under "Periyar Project". An extent of about 8,000 acres has been given on lease on payment of an annual rent of Rs.51- per acre. The waters of the dam irrigate about 2.23 lakh acres in Theni, Dindigul, Madurai, Sivagangai and Ramanathapuram Districts of Tamil Nadu. On 29.5.1970, two supplemental agreements were entered into between Kerala and Tamil Nadu; one for increasing the annual lease rent from Rs.51- to Rs.301- per acre and subjecting it to revision every 30 years; and in turn surrendering the fishing rights to Kerala and the other permitting Tamil Nadu to generate Hydro electric power on payment of certain charges to Kerala according to the quantum of power generated. These were executed as successors in interest to the Principal Deed of 1886.

There are examples in various parts of the world of masonry dams which have been strengthened. The Roosevelt Dam, in Arizona, USA, was built in 1911. In 1980, modifications were designed to meet safety standards and flood control. Its capacity had also been expanded. The Joux Dam built in France in 1905 was heightened in 1952 by top concrete section and post tension anchors. Upper Glendevol is a gravity dam in U.K. and was provided with rock-fill buttress downstream.

The strengthening works carried out in the case of the Mullaiperiyar Dam from 1980 to 1994 on the recommendations of the Chairman of the Central Water Commission are almost similar. In the old dam,the front and back of the dam were constructed as stone masonry with lime surkhi mortar. The centre of the dam was filled with lime surkhi concrete. Gravity dams withstand the pressure of water and tremors using their weight. As a short term action, to increase the weight of the dam, 21 feet wide, 3 feet thick RCC capping structure was provided on top of the dam for its entire length. Due to this, the weight of the dam is increased by about 35 tons per metre, ie. a total of 12000 tons weight has been added to the structure. As a part of medium term action, cable anchoring was also done on the basis of pre-stressing technology. At a distance of 5 feet away from the front face of the dam, on the top of the dam, four inch diameter holes were drilled at 9 feet internally along the length of the dam up to a depth of 30 feet inside the foundation rock. Inside these holes, 34 numbers of 7 mm diameter high strength steel wires were inserted. These cables were anchored in the foundation rocks. Initially concrete was poured to a depth of 20 feet and then cables were inserted and anchored. From the top a prestressing force of 120 tons was applied and locked. At this stage, concrete mix was poured again to fill the hole and then it was closed at the top. Due to this, these prestressed cables hold the dam strongly with foundation rocks with a force of 120 tons. 95 such cables were inserted and concrete filled at an interval of 9 feet for the entire length of the dam and strengthened to withstand various forces including seismic forces. As a long term measure, a 32 feet wide RCC backing concrete with 10 feet deep foundation up to a height of 145 feet above the ground abutting the cap structure was erected on the back of the dam. The existing dam and the backing concrete were designed and joined together using state-of-the art technology to behave as a single dam structure. Based on the Central Water Commission's recommendation, while building the backing concrete, two drainage galleries were also built at levels of 10 feet and 45 feet in the new structure. With these, water seepage from the dam is being measured daily.

It has been proved and established scientifically that a certain amount of water must leak as seepage from the dam, if it needs to be safe, strong and healthy.

In fact, when the water level rises above (FRL) 152 feet, to safeguard the dam, excess water is discharged by a spill way with 10 vents, each measuring 36×16 ft, which was already there. Using this, 86,000 Cu.ft of water/second can be discharged. Moreover, based on the advice of the Central Water Commission, an extra spilling capacity of 36,000 cu.ft. / second was added by constructing 3 vents measuring 40×16 ft. So, the current spilling capacity of the dam is approximately 1,22,000 cu. ft/second.

Thus, it is amply clear that the dam is safe and adequate steps have been taken by Tamil Nadu to ensure its safety.

On 27-2-2006, the Hon'ble Supreme Court of India by its judgement permitted Tamil Nadu to raise the water level in the Mullai Periyar Dam initially to 142 feet and carry out the remaining strengthening works. After the strengthening works are completed to the satisfaction of the Central Water Commission, independent experts will examine the safety angle, before the water level is permitted to be raised to 152 feet. To thwart this, "The Kerala Irrigation and Water Conservation (Amendment) Act 2006″ was passed by the Kerala Legislative Assembly and the amended Act came into force from 1 8.3.2006. The maximum water level of the Mullaiperiyar Dam was fixed at 136 feet by this Act. The Suit filed by the Government of Tamil Nadu challenging the Constitutional validity of this Amendment is still pending in the Supreme Court.

In October, 2009, in the Supreme Court, while hearing Tamil Nadu's petition, a Bench comprising Justices D.K.Jain, Mukundakam Sharma and R.M.Lodha observed "if every State in inter-state disputes sought enacting a legislation not to give effect to ourjudgement, it would have serious consequences. When this Court said that Tamil Nadu can raise the water level up to 142 feet, can you (Kerala) nullify it by enacting a legislation and fixing the water level at 136 feet?" it asked Senior Counsel Rajiv Dhawan appearing for the State of Kerala. "What is the sanctity of the Supreme Court if its judgements are not implemented?" The Kerala Counsel said the State had to come up with the legislation as it was concerned with the safety of its people. At this, Justice D.K.Jain said:"This Court is equally concerned with the safety of the people. The Court had taken all the facts and concerns expressed by the two parties before passing the decree".

To Kerala's objections to the Central Water Commission's studies, the Court remarked "the Central Water Commission is a statutory body. Do not label it with tar". Following this, a Five-Member Constitution Bench was constituted in November, 2009.

In February, 2010, the Constitution Bench comprising Justices D.K.Jain, B.Sudershan Reddy, Mukundakam Sharma, R.M.Lodha and Deepak Verma remarked "Your arguments are unfounded, misleading, fallacious and jugglery of words. You should support it with evidence." The Court made these remarks as it was not impressed with Kerala's argument that if the water level of the dam was allowed to be raised beyond 136 feet, it would lead to its collapse endangering public safety as it would submerge several villages. The Bench had said the arguments cannot be accepted as even during the three floods witnessed in 1924, 1943, and 1961, the water level had reached a maximum of 153.90 feet, 154.80 feet and 152.0 feet respectively, as against the designed maximum water level of 155 feet.

On February 18, 2010, the Hon'ble Supreme Court appointed an Empowered Committee to look into various aspects excepting legal and constitutional aspects including the validity of the Amendment, 2006, under the former Chief Justice of India, Dr. A.S. Anand as its Chairman. Tamil Nadu and Kerala appointed two former Supreme Court Judges from their respective States.

The Empowered Committee is expected to submit its report to the Hon'ble Supreme Court by February, 2012. The Committee has used and is using the services of the Central Water Commission, Central Water and Power Research Station, Geological Survey of India, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre and Central Soil and Material Research Station for the different studies and tests, conducted at the dam site and in their laboratories.

The human settlements in the area are much above the reach of the flood waters of the Mullaiperiyar Dam and the ldukki Reservoir of Kerala is designed to absorb the flood and to moderate flood up to about 4,00,000 cubic feet of water per second. In this respect, the Hon'ble Supreme Court has observed in its order dated 27th February 2006 that " it is the case of the State of Kerala that despite the 'copious rain', the Idukki Reservoir is not filled to its capacity. While the capacity of the reservoir is 70.5 tmc., it was filled only to the extent of 57.365 tmc. This also shows that assuming the worst happens more than 11 tmc water would be taken by Idukki Dam". When the waters reach ldukki Dam, which is about 50 Kms away, it will have only a velocity of 3 feet per second. It is also reported that when the water level at Mullaiperiyar Dam is 136 feet, the water spread area is 4678 acres and that if the water is stored to 155 feet, the water spread area will be 8591 acres. Since water has not been stored above 136 feet for a long time, the water spread area has been encroached upon by land grabbers in Kerala who have built resorts and other buildings on the lands leased to Tamil Nadu. If the water level is increased from 136 feet, these resorts will get submerged in water. This is also cited by some as the possible reason for the plea to decommission the Mullaiperiyar Dam.

There is no valid reason to believe that the Mullai Periyar Dam is unsafe. It is unfortunate that a fear psychosis among the people of Kerala is being built up. As the Mullai Periyar Dam is fully safe and as good as new, the people of Kerala should see through the machinations of vested interests and should feel secure that the retrofitted Mullai Periyar Dam is as good as new and therefore not a threat to the lives and properties of the people of the region. 


Also visit the following links

1. Wiki Mullaperiyar Dam in English :

2. Wiki Mullaperiyar Dam in Tamil :

ஜெயா டிவியில் மனம் மயக்கும் ‘தேன் கிண்ணம்’

ஜெயா டிவியில் மனம் மயக்கும் 'தேன் கிண்ணம்' 

செவ்வாய்க்கிழமை, மே 29, 2012, 9:52 [IST]

Posted by: Mayura Akilan

புரியாத புதிய பாடல்களை விட காலங்களை கடந்தாலும் தேன்போன்று இனிக்கும் பழைய பாடல்கள் இன்றைய ரசிகர்களை கவரத்தான் செய்கிறது. ஜெயா தொலைக்காட்சியில் திங்கள் முதல் வெள்ளி வரை காலை 9 மணிக்கு ஒளிபரப்பாகும் தேன் கிண்ணம் நிகழ்ச்சி ரசிகர்களின் கண்களுக்கும், காதுகளுக்கும் விருந்தாக அமைகிறது. ஒவ்வொரு நாளைக்கும் ஒவ்வொரு கருத்தை அடிப்படையாக கொண்டு இந்த நிகழ்ச்சி அமைந்துள்ளது.

Jaya Tv S Then Kinnam

இந்தவாரம் திங்கட்கிழமை சிறப்பு விருந்தினர் விருப்பம் ஒளிபரப்பானது. அதில் நடிகை சுகன்யா பங்கேற்று தனக்கு பிடித்த பழைய பாடல்களை கூற மதுரமான அந்த பாடல்கள் ஒளிபரப்பாகின. எங்கள் விருப்பம், நேயர் விருப்பம், பாட்டும் பின்னணியும் என தினம் ஒரு கருத்தோடு ஒளிபரப்பாகும் இந்த தேன்கிண்ணம் நிகழ்ச்சியை தொகுத்து வழங்கும் தொகுப்பாளினியை பற்றியும் சொல்ல வேண்டும்.

நிகழ்ச்சிக்கு ஏற்ப பாந்தமாய் புடவை கட்டிக்கொண்டு அழகாய் நிகழ்ச்சியை தொகுத்து வழங்குவது சிறப்பு அம்சம். மாடர்ன் டிரஸ் தொகுப்பாளினிகளுக்கு இடையே புடவை கட்டிய இந்த தொகுப்பாளினியின் தமிழ் உச்சரிப்பும் சிறப்பாக இருப்பதாக நேயர்கள் மத்தியில் பரவலாக கருத்து நிலவுகிறது.

English Summary: Jaya TV 's Thenkinnam is a classic one which is telecating Old songs on weekdays morning 9 A.M.


Sunday, May 27, 2012

Delhi HC: Marks obtained in CBSE exams can't be given under RTI

Marks obtained in CBSE exams cannot be given under RTI: HC


NEW DELHI, May 27, 2012

Students are having a last minute preparation for CBSE X exam at a centre in Visakhapatnam. File photo

Students are having a last minute preparation for CBSE X exam at a centre in Visakhapatnam. File photo

In a significant ruling, the Delhi High Court has held that marks obtained by a student in CBSE board exam cannot be revealed under the transparency law as it would "defeat" the purpose of the new grading system.

The court set aside the verdict of a single judge bench and the Central Information Commission, which had asked the Central Board of Secondary Education to reveal marks obtained by a girl in her Class X board examination in 2010.

"We are unable to agree; we feel that the CIC as well as the learned single judge, by directing disclosure of 'marks', in the regime of 'grades' have indeed undone what was sought to be done by replacing marks with grades and defeated the very objective thereof.

"The objective, in replacing the marks with grades, as can be gathered from the documents on record, was to grade students in a bandwidth rather than numerically...," a bench of Acting Chief Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw said.

Writing the judgement, Endlaw said the details of marks, obtained by the student in 10th board, cannot be termed as an "information" under the Right to Information Act as its disclosure would defeat the policy of awarding grades instead of marks.

Allowing the plea of CBSE, it said "no weightage can also be given to the plea of respondent (girl's father) that the marks even if disclosed would not be used for any other purpose.

"The possibility of respondent and his ward, in securing admission and for other purposes, using the said information to secure an advantage over others cannot be ruled out."

The apex transparency panel had allowed the plea of the student saying "since, the marks were available with the appellant (CBSE) and since none of the exemptions under the RTI Act were attracted to support the non disclosure thereof, the appellant was bound to and directed to provide the information sought."

Aggrieved by the order, CBSE appealed to the single judge bench of the High Court which upheld the order of the CIC.

The CBSE then filed an appeal against the order before a division bench which allowed its plea that disclosure of the marks would dilute and defeat the grading system.

"We have already held above that disclosure of marks, which though exists with the appellant would amount to allowing play to the policy earlier prevalent of marking the examinees. Merely because the appellant/its examiners for the purpose of grading, first mark the students would not compel this court to put at naught or to allow full play to the new policy of grades," it said.

Anil Kumar Kathpal, the father of the girl, had sought the details of the marks saying "this information will help me to identify her weak areas in studies and take timely action, so that she can pursue her career after Class XII."


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Read FULL Judgment of Hon'ble Delhi HC at:

Read CIC Order dated 27-09-2011 at: 

Thursday, May 24, 2012

RTI exposes lavish expenses of President and Speaker of LS

பிரதீபா பாட்டீல்.. 12 வெளிநாட்டு டூர், 22 நாடுகளில் பயணம், செலவு ரூ. 205 கோடி!

திங்கள்கிழமை, மார்ச் 26, 2012, 8:26 [IST]

டெல்லி: குடியரசுத் தலைவர் பிரதீபா பாட்டீல் குடியரசுத் தலைவராகப் பதவியேற்றது முதல் இதுவரை 22 நாடுகளில் சுற்றுப்பயணம் செய்துள்ளார். இதற்காக மக்களின் வரிப்பணத்திலிருந்து அரசு செலவிட்ட தொகை ரூ. 205 கோடியாகும் என்று ஆர்.டி.ஐ. தகவல் மூலம் தெரிய வந்துள்ளது.

மொத்தம் 12 முறை அவர் வெளிநாடுகளுக்கு சுற்றுப்பயணம் செய்துள்ளாராம். கடும் முயற்சிகளுக்குப் பின்னர் கிடைத்த ஆர்.டி.ஐ. தகவல்கள் மூலம் இந்த விஷயம் தெரிய வந்துள்ளது.

கடந்த 2007ம் ஆண்டு ஜூலை மாதம் குடியரசுத் தலைவராகப் பதவியேற்றார் பிரதீபா பாட்டில். நாட்டின் முதல் பெண் குடியரசுத் தலைவர் என்ற பெருமை இவருக்கு உண்டு. நாட்டின் எந்த குடியரசுத் தலைவரும் வைத்திராத செலவை இவர் நாட்டுக்கு வைத்துள்ளார் என்ற பெருமையையும் தற்போது பெற்றுள்ளார்.

இன்னும் நான்கு மாதங்களில் பதவியிலிருந்து ஓய்வு பெறவுள்ள பிரதீபா பாட்டீல், இதுவரை வெளிநாட்டு பயணங்களுக்காக செலவிட்ட தொகை ரூ. 205 கோடியாகும். இது முழுக்க முழுக்க மக்களின் வரிப்பணமாகும்.

குடியரசுத் தலைவருக்கான பிரத்யேக விமானங்களுக்காக மட்டும் ரூ. 169 கோடி செலவிடப்பட்டுள்ளது. பெரும்பாலும் போயிங் 747-400 ரக விமானத்தைத்தான் குடியரசுத் தலைவரின் பயணத்திற்குப் பயன்படுத்தியுள்ளனர். பாட்டீலுடன் பெரும்பாலும் அவரது குடும்ப உறுப்பினர்களும் மொத்தமாக செல்வதுண்டு.

தங்குமிடச் செலவு, வெளிநாடுகளுக்குப் போகும் போது அங்கு உள்ளூர் பயணம், தினசரிப் படி, இதர செலவுகள் என ரூ. 36 கோடி வரை செலவாகியுள்ளதாம்.

குடியரசுத் தலைவருக்கான விமானத்தை ஏர் இந்தியாதான் வழங்கும். இந்த செலவுத் தொகையை மத்திய பாதுகாப்பு அமைச்சகமே வழங்குகிறது.

ஏர் இந்தியா நிறுவனம் இதுவரை பாதுகாப்பு அமைச்சகத்திடமிருந்து விமான செலவாக ரூ. 169 கோடியை வசூலித்துள்ளது. இன்னும் ரூ. 16 கோடிக்கு பில் பாஸாகாமல் உள்ளதாம்.

குடியரசுத் தலைவர் இதுவரை பிரேசில், மெக்சிகோ, சிலி, பூட்டான், வியட்நாம், இந்தோனேசியா, ஸ்பெயின், போலந்து, ரஷ்யா, தஜிகிஸ்தான், இங்கிலாந்து, சைப்ரஸ், சீனா, லாவோஸ், கம்போடியா, ஐக்கிய அரபு எமிரேட்ஸ், சிரியா, மொரீஷியஸ், தென் கொரியா, சுவிட்சர்லாந்து, ஆஸ்திரியா ஆகிய நாடுகளுக்குப் போயுள்ளார். மொத்தம் 79 நாட்கள் அவர் வெளிநாடுகளில் கழித்துள்ளார்.

விரைவில் அவர் தென் ஆப்பிரிக்காவுக்குப் போகவுள்ளதாகவும் தகவல்கள் தெரிவிக்கிந்றன.

அவருக்கு முன்பு குடியரசுத் தலைவராக இருந்த அப்துல் கலாம், 17 நாடுகளில் சுற்றுப்பயணம் செய்துள்ளார். 7 முறை சுற்றுப்பயணம் போயுள்ளார். அவருக்கு முன்பு இருந்த கே.ஆர்.நாராயணன், 10 நாடுகளில் 6 முறை சுற்றுப்பயணம் செய்துள்ளார். சங்கர் தயாள் சர்மா இருந்தபோது 4 பயணமாக 16 நாடுகளுக்குப் போய் வந்தார்.

இவர்களின் பயணச் செலவு குறித்த விவரத்தை தெரிவிக்கவில்லை மத்திய அரசு. இருப்பினும் இவர்களுக்கு ஆன செலவை விட பல மடங்கு செலவு குடியரசுத் தலைவர் பிரதீபா பாட்டீல் பயணங்களுக்கு ஆகியுள்ளதாக கூறப்படுகிறது.

English Summary: President Pratibha Patil's wanderlust has cost the public exchequer a whopping Rs 205 crore on her foreign visits, surpassing the record of all her predecessors. Since assuming office as the country's first woman President in July 2007, Patil has undertaken 12 foreign trips covering 22 countries across four continents. She has four more months to go for her five-year tenure and a trip to South Africa is said to be on the anvil.


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கடற்படை தலைமையகத்தை பார்வையிட் பிரதீபா வந்ததற்கான செலவு ரூ. 23 கோடி!

வியாழக்கிழமை, மே 24, 2012, 15:35 [IST]

டெல்லி: மேற்கு கமாண்ட், கடற்படை தலைமையகத்தை ஆய்வு செய்ய குடியரசுத் தலைவர் பிரதீபா பாட்டீல் வந்தபோது ரூ. 23 கோடி செலவிடப்பட்டதாக தகவல் அறியும் சட்டத்தின் மூலம் தெரிய வந்துள்ளது.

இந்தியாவின் முப்படைகளின் தலைமைத் தளபதி அதாவது சுப்ரீம் கமாண்ட் ஆக இருப்பவர் குடியரசுத் தலைவர். கடந்த 2011ம் ஆண்டு மேற்கு கமாண்ட் கடற்படை தலைமை அலுவலகத்திற்கு ஆய்வுக்காக குடியரசுத் தலைவர் பிரதீபா பாட்டீல் வருகை தந்தார். இந்த நிகழ்ச்சிக்கு மிகப் பெரிய அளவில் செலவு செய்துள்ளது கடற்படை. கிட்டத்தட்ட 900க்கும் மேற்பட்ட விருந்தினர்களை வரவழைத்து ஆடம்பரமாக செலவிட்டுள்ளது. மொத்தச் செலவு ரூ. 23.24 கோடியாகும்.

எஸ்.சி.அகர்வால் என்ற பொது நல சேவகர் தகவல் அறியும் சட்டத்தின் மூலம் இந்த விவரத்தைப் பெற்று வெளியிட்டுள்ளார். அதன்படி இந்த நிகழ்ச்சிக்காக செலவிடப்பட்ட தொகையின் விவரம் வருமாறு...

குடிநீருக்காக ரூ. 12 லட்சம்

இந்த நிகழ்ச்சிக்கான ஏற்பாடுகளில் ஒன்றாக குடிநீர் வசதிக்காக ரூ. 12 லட்சம் பணத்தை செலவிட்டுள்ளனர். அதாவது, நிகழ்ச்சிக்கு அழைக்கப்பட்ட ஒவ்வொரு கெஸ்ட்டுக்கும், தலா 83 ஒரு லிட்டர் மினரல் வாட்டர் பாட்டில்களை வாங்கிக் கொடுத்துள்ளனர்.

ரூ. 17 லட்சம் பணம், குடியரசுத் தலைவருக்கு வரவேற்பு அளிப்பதற்கான ஏற்பாடுகளுக்காக செலவிடப்பட்டுள்ளது.

படிக்கட்டுக்களை சீரமைக்க ரூ. 14 லட்சம்

கமாண்ட் அலுவலகம் அருகே உள்ள ஒரு கால்நடைப் பண்ணையின் வேலிகைளை சீரமைக்க ரூ. 14 லட்சத்தையும், படிக்கட்டுக்களை சீரமைக்க ரூ. 14 லட்சமும் செலவிடப்பட்டுள்ளது.

டைனிங் டேபிள் வாங்க ரூ. 26 லட்சம்

30 டைனிங் டேபிள்கள், 60 டைனிங் சேர்களை மற்றும் விஐபி சேர்கள், பிற மரச் சாமான்களை வாங்க ரூ. 26.96 லட்சம் செலவிடப்பட்டுள்ளது.

960 விருந்தினர்கள் இந்த நிகழ்ச்சிக்கு அழைக்கப்பட்டுள்ளனர். இவர்களைக் கவனிக்க ஆன செலவு மட்டும் ரூ. 17.57 லட்சமாகும்.

மளிகை சாமான் வாங்க ரூ. 28.14 லட்சம்

சாப்பாட்டுக்குத் தேவையான மளிகை சாமான்களை வாங்க ரூ. 28.14 லட்சம் செலவிடப்பட்டுள்ளது.

ஊழியர்களுக்கான கூலி ரூ. 1 கோடி

பல்வேறு பணிகளுக்கு அமர்த்தப்பட்ட ஆட்களுக்கு சம்பளமாக மட்டும் ரூ. 1 கோடி தரப்பட்டுள்ளது.

விழா நடந்த முல்லா ஆடிட்டோரியத்தில் செயற்கை நீரூற்று ஒன்றை ரூ. 6 லட்சம் செலவில் அமைத்துள்ளனர். அடிப்படைக் கட்டமைப்புக்காக மட்டும் ரூ. 11.67 கோடி செலவிடப்பட்டுள்ளது.

கடந்த ஆண்டு டிசம்பர் 20ம் தேதி ஒரே ஒரு நாள் நடந்த நிகழ்ச்சிக்குத்தான் இவ்வளவு செலவு செய்துள்ளதாம் கடற்படை.

English Summary: The Navy has run up a tab of Rs 23 crore for a day's extravaganza for the President. This included a bill of Rs 12 lakh for drinking water and Rs 17 lakh for the presidential banquet, besides spending Rs 14 lakh on alteration of a cattle fence and a similar amount on fixing a staircase. The President's Fleet Review of the Navy, in which the supreme commander of the armed forces inspects the maritime prowess of the force, took place in 2011 and is held once in the President's tenure.


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Pratibha's foreign trips cost nation a record Rs. 205 crore


NEW DELHI, March 26, 2012

President Pratibha Devisingh Patil plays table tennis during a visit to M.J. College in Jalgaon on Saturday.

President Pratibha Devisingh Patil plays table tennis during a visit to M.J. College in Jalgaon on Saturday - PTI

President Pratibha Patil's foreign visits have cost the public exchequer Rs. 205 crore, surpassing the record of all her predecessors.

Since assuming office as the country's first woman President in July 2007, Ms. Patil has undertaken 12 trips covering 22 countries across four continents. She has four more months to go in her five-year tenure and a trip to South Africa is said to be on the anvil.

A series of RTI applications has revealed that Air India incurred over Rs. 169 crore on use of chartered aircraft, always a Boeing 747-400, on the foreign visits by Ms. Patil, mostly accompanied by family members. A visit to Bhutan was covered by a smaller jet.

A further sum of nearly Rs. 36 crore has been incurred by the External Affairs Ministry on accommodation, local travel, daily allowance and "miscellaneous" expenses, according to its information.

The RTI applications were filed over three years during which the authorities concerned showed great reluctance to reveal information.

The Defence Ministry, which pays Air India for use of chartered aircraft by the President, fended off RTI queries and provided little information.

The airline has billed the Defence Ministry for over Rs. 169 crore for aircraft used by Ms. Patil. Of this, it has paid nearly Rs. 153 crore.


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Prez's Naval fleet review bled Centre of Rs 23 crore


When austerity is the watch word, RTI response reveals that President Pratibha Patil's review of the Naval fleet at Mumbai on December 20, 2011 cost a whopping Rs 23.24 crore.

Another RTI response reveals Deputy Chairperson of Planning Commission Montek Ahluwalia's global forays between May and October 2011, cost the exchequer a sum of Rs 36,40,140 for four trips covering 18 nights, an average cost of Rs 2.02 lakh a day. Similarly, Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar's globetrotting comprised 29 trips in 35 months of her tenure, cost the exchequer around Rs 10 crore .

According to the detailed information provided by Naval Headquarters to RTI activist Subhash Agrawal, the Presidential Fleet Review at Mumbai seas incurred massive expenditure under various heads such as repair of submarines, hiring of vessels, transport and casual labour; maintenance of marine assets, repair and refits of aircraft related stores, etc.

The major component of the cost was incurred on the construction and maintenance of the infrastructure development. This was Rs 11.67 crore, including Rs 1.32 crore spent for external paintings of buildings and roof tops, including repair of some buildings.

Rs 1.2 crore was spent on relaying roads; Rs 41 lakh on the special repairs to the road from Afghan Church to RC Church (near Navy area); Rs 27 lakh for the special repair to heritage wall at INS Angre; Rs 8 lakh on display board on main roads; Rs 49 lakh spent on special repairs to external services and rain beating wall of certain at VIP roads and procurement of light fittings and cable, refurbishment of tower, street and security lights among others, said the RTI reply.

The RTI reply also stated that Rs 26.96 lakh was spent to buy new furniture, including 30 dining tables and 60 dining chairs, furniture for VIP

lounge and for cabin staff. Rs 19.68 lakh was spent on the catering. Of this, Rs 17.57 lakh was spent on the catering for presidential banquet involving 960 people while Rs 2.11 lakh on catering for the Presidential yacht/ship involving 750 people.

During Presidential Fleet Review, President Pratibha Patil, took salute from a flotilla of 81 ships, including four submarines and 44 aircraft of the Navy and the Indian Coast Guard.

A separate RTI response shows that between May and October 2011, Montek undertook "four trips covering 18 nights which cost the exchequer a sum of Rs. 36,40,140", an average cost of Rs 2.02 lakh a day. Montek made 42 officials foreign trips and spent 274 days overseas during his seven-year-tenure. Interestingly, out of his 42 trips, 23 were to America. The total cost of his travelling expenses according to RTI response come to Rs.2.34 core.

Meira Kumar during her three year tenure visited 29 countries. RTI responses reveal she led several delegations, mostly to international conferences, comprising several MPS and bureaucrats, costing around Rs 10 crore.

Meanwhile, reacting to Meira Kumar's foreign junkets, Lok Sabha Secretariat on Wednesday in statement claimed that all trips were in her official capacity and "part of official responsibility."

"In her official capacity, the Speaker has to lead Indian Parliamentary Delegations to the Conferences of the Inter- Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), of which India is a member," the statement said.


Also read the related stories

Meira Kumar took trips abroad every 37 days

PTI May 21, 2012, 09.02PM IST

NEW DELHI: Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar has undertaken as many 29 foreign trips in 35 months since assuming the high office which means she has gone on a trip nearly every 37 days.

The former IFS officer has visited 28 countries accompanied by MPs belonging to various parties as well as senior officials of the Lok Sabha secretariat incurring a total expenditure of nearly Rs 10 crore, according to information given to activist Subhash Agrawal under RTI Act.

The country most visited by her is Switzerland, which is essentially in connection with Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) work, according to details furnished by the Lok Sabha secretariat.

Kumar, who was elected Speaker on June 3, 2009 has, in all, travelled abroad for 146 days till April 30 this year.

For IPU work, Kumar has undertaken seven visits to four countries - Switzerland four times, while once each to the USA, Panama and, Thailand.

In addition, she visited Trinidad and Tobago, UK, Sri Lanka, Isle of Man, Swaziland, Kenya and Tanzania for the work related to Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, the reply said.

Kumar also took parliamentary delegations to Italy, Austria, Mauritius, Bhutan, Hungary, Luxembourg, Mongolia, Mexico, Vietnam, Republic of Korea, Sweden, Denmark, Japan, Iran, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay.

In five visits to the USA, Trinidad and Tobago, Sri Lanka, Isle of Man and Swaziland, she was only accompanied by the officials of the Parliament while in rest of the visits she was also accompanied by MPs.

According to the reply, total expenses on these visits were Rs 9.89 crore. She also gave gifts worth Rs 11.66 lakh to her hosts.


Also read the Clarification Statement by President of India

President's office justifies Pratibha Patil's foreign trip expenses

TNN Mar 28, 2012, 02.43AM IST

NEW DELHI: Caught in a controversy over the President's travel expenses amounting to over Rs 200 crore, Rashtrapati Bhawan spokesperson on Tuesday said that comparisons of the number of foreign visits by various Presidents was misleading. President Pratibha Patil's office also said that the visits were necessary to deepen bilateral cooperation.

A statement by President's Officer on Special Duty Archana Datta also explained that the visits were undertaken after careful appraisal and recommendation by the Prime Minister's Office and ministry of external affairs.

Defending the size of the delegation that have accompanied Patil on 12 trips covering 22 countries, the statement said that the delegation comprised ministers, MPs, senior officials besides "supporting" and security staff. All Presidents have been accompanied by family members and Presidential guests besides media contingent.

The statement also described as "potentially misleading" comparison of foreign visits undertaken by the President with her predecessors.

It said that among her predecessors, Dr A P J Abdul Kalam had visited 17 countries, K R Narayanan (13), R Venkataraman (21) and V V Giri (22).

In a response to an RTI, the government said that about Rs 205 crore had been spent on Patil's foreign trips.


Also read the Clarification Statement by Speaker of Lok Sabha

Speaker's Foreign Visits Official in Nature, Clarifies LSS

PTI | NEW DELHI | MAY 23, 2012

The foreign visits undertaken by Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar were part of her official responsibilities and not to holiday destinations, the Lok Sabha Secretariat said today.

Reacting to news reports on the Speaker embarking on a foreign visit every 37 days which cost nearly Rs 10 crore, the Secretariat said in a release that Kumar's visits were part of her official responsibilities.

"In her official capacity, the Speaker has to lead Indian Parliamentary Delegations to the Conferences of the Inter- Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA), of which India is a member," the statement said.

It said bilateral exchanges of Parliamentary delegations on goodwill visits have become more regular as parliamentary diplomacy gained ground as a major complement to other diplomatic initiatives.

"The news items and their wording tend to mislead the readers by suggesting that these visits were to holiday destinations," it said.

The statement also said that MPs of all political parties were part of the delegation and often travelled economy class as against their entitlement for first class travel in airlines.

It said that a large number of foreign Parliamentary delegations also visited Parliament in the last three years.

The Secretariat, in response to an RTI query, had said that the Speaker had undertaken as many 29 foreign trips in 35 months since assuming the high office in 2009.


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(1) புதுவை மெரினா பீச் (1) பொக்கிஷம் (1) மணிரத்னம் (1) மலட்டு நிலம் (1) ராஜசுலோசனா (1) வாஞ்சி மணியாச்சி ரயில் நிலையம் (1) வாஞ்சிநாதன் (1)