Millennium Post

British-era tradition costs nation Rs 23 cr in a day

While the people of the country are discussing the steep hike in petrol price, a Right to Information (RTI) reply has revealed that the Indian Navy spent Rs 23.24 crore in Mumbai in last December for the fleet review exercise to honour the supreme commandar of the armed forces President Pratibha Patil.

This expenditure was incurred for the event that lasted just a day.

The RTI reply, which was sought by the activist Subhash Chandra Agrawal, says that the fleet reveiew had a budgetary allocation of 23.24 crore. Out of this amount, Rs 26.96 lakh was spent to acquire new furniture, which included 30 dining tables and 60 dining chairs, besides furniture for VIPs and other staff and Rs 17.57 lakh was spent on the Presidential Banquet for 960 guests and Rs 2.11 lakh on catering facilities for the catering at Presidential Yacht for 760 invitees.

The president undertook the fleet review on 20 December last year, in which she took salute from a flotilla of 81 ships, including four submarines and 44 aircraft of the Navy and the Indian Coast Guard. During the review, the supreme commander inspects the maritime prowess of the force.

The reply shows that the Navy also undertook large number of long term infrastructure development to make the event successful and around Rs 11.67 crore were spent on the works.

Fleet review is a British era tradition, which was started in the 15th century in Great Britain. Since then naval reviews have been held as a show of might of a nation’s navy and to assure the supreme commander that the nation’s naval fleet is ready to safeguard the security of the country.

The fleet review is done once during the tenure of a president. But, Zakir Hussain, Neelam Sanjeev Reddy and Shankar Dayal Sharma did not review it.
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