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Karnataka MLAs’ junket sparks controversy

A contingent of MLAs from Karnataka is planning to embark on a 10 to 12-day tour of Brazil, Argentina and Peru next month, sparking a controversy over the proposed jaunt when parts of the state are hit by drought.

The ‘study tour’ of the Estimates Committee of the Legislature, comprising MLAs from all parties will cover holiday destinations such as Rio De Janerio, Manaus, Iguassu, Lima, Cusco, and Buenos Aires, besides Dubai, according to the itinerary.

Among the destinations are the ‘exuberant ecosystems of Rio’s tropical urban jungle’ and shopping at Manaus, where they will experience rhythms of Samba, Tango and Paraguayan music during dinner and a show at a local restaurant.’

The planned junket comes even as 65 taluks in the state have been declared drought-hit, parts of which were visited recently by the central teams after Karnataka government sought funds from the Centre to meet the situation.

‘The Estimates Committee, consisting of as many as 18 legislators, is planning a study tour of Brazil, Argentina and Peru,’ Karnataka Assembly Speaker Kagodu Thimappa told a news agency.

He said the tour programme has been approved but the date of journey has yet to be finalised. ‘It depends on the committee to decide on the date of journey and schedule.’
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