The Gujarat High Court on Thursday reserved its order on a petition demanding directions to the state government to recover the cost incurred on Chief Minister Narendra Modis Sadbhvana Mission fast in Ahmedabad between September 17 and 19 last year.
The petitioner has contended that the programme was of either the BJP or Modi in his personal capacity and so,the cost incurred on it cannot be paid from the government treasury,which is money of tax payers.
The petitioner has been identified as Rajesh Mota from Ahmedabad. Motas lawyer,Ratna Vora,said they have got several RTI replies from the government authorities related to the huge cost incurred on the programme.
She said the rent of Rs 30 lakh for the Gujarat Universitys Convention Hall was paid by the Roads & Buildings Department whereas Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation authorities provided all the facilities without charging any cost. Similarly,the Information Department had issued around 535 releases to newspapers across India related to the programme during the three days. At the same time,around 415 hoardings related to the event were put in different parts of Gujarat.
She said the function could not be called a government event and that neither the Governor,nor the Mayor of Ahmedabad nor the Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly were officially invited to the function.
Vora said that during the hearing,the court orally observed it cannot give directions to the government on the issue of expenditure. The court,she added,also observed that if the petitioner did not like a person,the latter should be ousted through electoral procedure.