The man who was supposed to care for your tax-money as the finance secretary (Ramesh Negi) actually splurged it instead flying 32 times, mostly to Delhi, between 2006-2007 at a cost to you of Rs 7,80,800. Australia, China, US, Russia, Dubai were also destinations for our IAS officers

October 3, 2008
A fat bill

Run(away) costs so far;
JP Singh: 2 February, 2006-10 October, 2007- Rs 17,43,663
RP Pal: 11 September, 2005-29 October, 2007- Rs 8,24,733
JK Dadoo: 30 July, 2005-7 September, 2006 - Rs 11,04,312

Total: 36,72,708

Ramesh Negi

The man who was supposed to care for your tax-money as the finance secretary actually splurged it instead flying 32 times, mostly to Delhi, between 23 February, 2006-22 November, 2007 at a cost to you of Rs 7,80,800.

VK Jha

He spent Rs 5,78,395 between 9 April, 2006-26 October, 2007 flying up in the air not flapping his wings but not being the wind beneath your wings either. But what must have taken some doing is the fact that he flew to Chennai between 18 April-12 May, 2006 (Rs 30,203) and on 9 April, 5 June and 7 June, 2006 to Delhi (Rs 63,102) returning to base in a hurry only to take off to China between 18-27 June, 2006 (Rs 1,38,675). Phew! And at that cost you can bet he didn't fly solo to China either. Jha who apparently had a thing for jetting off frequently, flew quickly again, this time to Russia, between 16-27 September, 2006. Between 28 April, 2006-7 May, 2007 he flew to Dubai (Rs 98,262). In other words, Rs 3,58,596 of the cost of keeping him airborne was consumed by his foreign trips. And you thought they homed in only on Delhi.

Diwan Chand

He spent Rs 2,95,046 between 9 April, 2006-26 October, 2007 flying only to Delhi.

Santosh Vaidya

Better known for the havoc he and Ramesh Negi as chief election commissioner caused to most candidates caught red-handed for greasing palms in the last election; Santosh Vaidya spent Rs 3,27,105 between 16 June, 2006-20 July, 2007. He flew once to Hungary for a week spending Rs 1,65,000.

On auto pilot

JP Singh

His flying to Delhi mainly between 2 February, 2006-10 October, 2007 cost Rs 17,43,663. That is a lot of flying in a short period. This included Rs 2,44,509 spent jetting to France and Portugal and Rs 3,73,499 to fly to the Big Apple. Some people have their apple and eat it too.

RP Pal

The Bong with the huge Bang to spend your tax money, spent Rs 8,24,733 flying literally with unrestrained permission to take off by Ground Control. Because while his brethren could enforce the need-to-fly-to-Delhi clause in their defense of flying to the capital where India's ultimate rulers preside over them, Pal chose instead to fly where he fancied. Sydney and Andaman Islands and like a homing pigeon he headed to Kolkatta frequently. His flying expense included Rs 2,19,719 on a Sydney junket.  He spent Rs 1,43,600 to fly to Port Blair in the Andamans between 17-18 July, 2006, quite obviously with family or friends. He also spent Rs 53,519 flying directly to Port Blair returning via Kolkata and Mumbai this time on 22-29 October, 2007. Pal returned to Kolkata he missed so badly, on 6-10 November, 2005, on 5-10 December, 2005, on 29 March-1 April, 2006, on 8-16 May, 2006, on 31 August-5 September, 2007, on 23-24 March, 2007 for a day only, and on 30 July-30 August, 2007 for an entire month this time, evidently returning only after exhausting his love for the city. This bout of extravagance (the seven Kolkata trips) cost Rs 2,23,167 and does not include the one flight from Port Blair to Kolkata. Pal, who recently was in the news for all the wrong reasons, flew 21 times in the time I researched 11 September, 2005-29 October, 2007.

JK Dadoo

A former Development Commissioner and also acting Chief Secretary, he did his damndest to fly to Delhi only billing you Rs 11,04,312. Incredibly the man flew only once between Delhi-Hyderabad and once between Daman-Delhi. Or was it actually credible, because I think Dadoo the Big Daddy of planning foreign holidays was saving up for his flight to Iran between 5-15 November, 2005. Cost: Rs 1,01,000. He had Rs 6,77,496 (that's right) to spare to fly off to Brazil, Venezuela and Mexico between 21 April-5 May, 2006. The only other international frequent flier I can think of as a result of my research is the non-resident or barely resident, Commissioner for NRI (Non-Resident Indian) Affairs, Eduardo Faleiro. I researched Dadoo's flying habits from 30 July, 2005-7 September, 2006 and in this short span of 13 months plus a week and discovered he flew 23 times! The man was barely at his desk preferring the pressurized cabin air of an aircraft to the regulated air conditioning of his cabin at the government Secretariat.

Now consider this. If you factor in Pal's and Dadoo's hotel, internal travel, food, gift and entertainment expenses incurred during their travels, you might seriously want to become Kamikazi pilots. In a short period (November, 2005-May, 2006) I also researched his eating habits and Dadoo spent Rs 2,53,271 entertaining government secretaries etc including this huge one; Rs 1,20,850 on a farewell dinner for Kiran Dingra (ex-CS) at the Taj Holiday Village on 22 January 2006. Chew on that.