The state government has spent Rs 2.39 crore on Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar’s travel by special flights in less than five months.
This excludes his regular air travel expenses. From the time he took the reins of the state to December 6, Shettar made 21 trips, including nine to his hometown Hubli.
In all, the government has spent Rs 11.21 crore on hiring private planes and helicopters since January 2009, covering the tenures of BS Yeddyurappa, his successor DV Sadananda Gowda and Shettar.
Shettar gave this information in his written reply to Congress MLA Ramalinga Reddy in the Assembly on Tuesday.
During the tenures of Gowda and Shettar, the state government has hired planes and helicopters from Delhibased -Chipsan Aviation.
But, Yeddyurappa availed the services of different firms. Interestingly, he used a helicopter belonging to his loyalist businessman Vijay Sankeshwar’s firm VRL Logistics for 30 of his 79 special flights. There is a considerable difference in fares from one firm to another.
While VRL Logistics has charged Rs 2,75,750 for a Bangalore- Mysore and back flight, GMR Aviation Pvt Ltd charged more than double (Rs 5,65,288) for the same route.
Swaja’s Air Charter was paid Rs 97,500 for a flight from Chennai to Bangalore HAL Airport. But two days later, the same firm charged Rs 2,60,330 for a flight from HAL Airport to Chennai.