Kerala CM’s chopper expenses excluded from Ockhi relief fund. Vijayan’s office said on Tuesday evening that officials were not aware of things and as soon as they came to know, the order was withdrawn. Later, this claim also proved wrong…..reports Asian Lite News
Following an opposition protest, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s office on Tuesday announced cancellation of an official order that envisaged deducting from the Ockhi cyclone relief fund the expenses incurred on his helicopter ride to cyclone-hit areas.
Vijayan flew on board a chartered chopper on December 26 from Thrissur, where he was attending a Communist Party of India-Marxist meeting, to the state capital to meet a central team that had come visiting from Delhi to study the damage caused by the cyclone on November 30.
After the meeting, Vijayan flew back to Thrissur. His government had debited the chopper ride’s expenses to the relief fund.
Vijayan’s office said on Tuesday evening that officials were not in the know of things and as soon as they came to know, the order was withdrawn.
A CMO official said the CM was in the dark about the order. “The order will be cancelled. General Administration Department will bear the expense incurred for the chopper trip”, he said.
But the claim of CM’s Office has proved wrong by bringing into light the copy of the order.
The copy of the order for payment of the helicopter journey from the State Disaster Relief Fund was handed over to the private secretary of the CM.
Besides, the official order says that the payment is being granted from the Disaster Relief Fund as per the directives of the State Police Chief.
“It’s really a shame that the money spent on the chopper ride was debited to the Ockhi relief fund account. It clearly shows that the Vijayan government is not at all serious in handling relief operations, which the fisherfolk need badly. This denotes a pathetic state of affairs,” said state Congress President M.M. Hassan.