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Haj Subsidy Scam: Where were 790 Crore Spent?

Afroz Alam Sahil, BeyondHeadlines

New Delhi.  The Supreme Court on Monday will hear a special leave petition filed by Union of India against the verdict of Mumbai High Court in a case regarding Haj Subsidy and Haj quota to private tour operators.

Vivek Jeph, under secretary Ministry of External Affairs, has filed an affidavit in Supreme Court on behalf of Union of India giving details about Haj subsidy and other Haj related Functions.

According to the affidavit the Haj Subsidy given by Government of India in Year 2011 was 685 crore. The Government pays Haj subsidy on Airfare.

Shockingly in a reply to RTI filed by BeyondHeadlines the Ministry of External Affairs on 20th April, 2012 said that the subsidy paid in year 2011 was 605 crores.

The difference of 80 Crore in the affidavit and the RTI indicates towards a new scam in name of Haj Subsidy or the Government of India is lying to the Supreme Court by Producing False facts.

More Shockingly in last year 124921 Hajis went to Haj by Haj Committee of India. The Government paid subsidy of 38,800 per Haji on the airfare. If we calculate the total Haj subsidy on airfare it comes to nearly 483 crores.

But in the Affidavit the government says 685 crores were spent on the Haj Subsidy. BeyondHeadlines and the people of India would like to ask the government that where were 202 crores spent?

It should be noted that the government pays Haj Subsidy only on the airfare.  In last five years the Government (as per the affidavit submitted in SC) paid Haj Subsidy of 3347 Crores. Shockingly the total Airfare subsidy comes to 2557 Crores (calculated on No. of Hajis and Airfare).

The data show that 790 Crore more were spent on Haj Subsidy then the total subsidy on Airfare in last 5 years.  This difference indicates towards a larger scam in name of Haj Subsidy.

Also why there is difference in facts provided through RTI and in the affidavit submitted in the Supreme Court.  There are also differences in No. of Hajis as well.

According to the affidavit filed in the Supreme Court the Government says that Ministry of Civil Aviation floats a tender to select an airline to get competitive fare to ferry Haj Pilgrims.  From 2007 onwards the airfare is as follows. 47182, 72640, 55200, 47675, 54800.

The airfare is fluctuating every year but in 2008 it was shockingly high and the government paid subsidy of 60640, which is nearly double from the earlier and later year. BeyondHeadlines would like to ask the MEA that what happened in 2008 that ministry was forced to select an Airline with such high rates? In 2008 the total airfare subsidy paid was 895 crore, which is nearly double to the earlier year.

The tables below shows the difference in Haj Subsidy.

Affidavit submitted in Hon’ble Supreme Court

Year No. of Pilgrims Travel Cost per Pilgrim (Rs.) Amount paid by each Pilgrim Subsidy per Pilgrim(Rs) Total Subsidy (In Crores) Actual Subsidy on Airfare (In Crores) Difference(In Crores)
2001 71215 29000 12000 17000 156.68 121.06 35.62
2002 70298 36609 12000 24609 173.63 172.99 0.64
2003 70019 36504 12000 24504 172.00 171.57 0.43
2004 71945 34240 12000 22240 160.70 160.00 0.70
2005 80786 35000 12000 23000 185.81 185.81 —–
2006 99926 40000 12000 28000 280 279.79 0.21
2006-II 108373 44111 12000 32111 367 347 20
2007 110000 47182 12000 35182 477 387 90
2008 123211 72640 12000 60640 895 747 148
2009 125000 55200 12000 43200 690 540 150
2010 125850 47675 16000 31675 600 398 202
2011 125000 548000 16000 38800 685 485 200

Information Received by RTI

Year No. of Pilgrim Amount of Subsidy (in Rs. Crores)*
2001 156.68
2002 173.63
2003 69,795 172.00
2004 71,711 160.70
2005 80,786 198.00
2006 99,926 290.00
2006-II 108,373 470.56
2007 110,415 477.00
2008 121,787 895.00
2009 120,127 690.00
2010 125,850 600.00
2011 1,24,921 605.00 +service tax to be paid

*Includes provisional figures


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