Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal has lashed out at the Modi government over its expenditure on advertisements to mark its two-year anniversary on May 26.
Kejriwal, who has been accused of spending crores on publicity, cited sources to allege that the central government has spent “Rs. 1,000 crore” on the ads.
Modi govt spend on ads for jst ONE event 2 yr bash? Sources- more than Rs 1000cr
All Del govt depts total spend less than 150cr for full yr
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) May 26, 2016
AAP leader Ashutosh also tweeted:
AAP Govt was accused for Advertisements, do I need to remind how much money is spent now by MODI Govt on Media blitz. Will TV discuss this ?
— ashutosh (@ashutosh83B) May 26, 2016
Kejriwal’s response comes following the criticism that the AAP government faced from the Opposition over print advertisements during the second phase of the Delhi government’s odd-even scheme in the national capital between April 15 and 30.
The publications that received money from the Kejriwal government for carrying the advertisements included dailies from Kerala, Karnataka, Odisha and Tamil Nadu. The Congress questioned the justification of “outstation ads” being published by the government.
The AAP government in Delhi was criticized recently for setting side Rs 526 crore in its budget for publicity. However, in its response, the party said: “Last year’s budget has been placed before the assembly and the government has not even spent Rs 80 crore on advertisements. Every penny spent is accounted for. These are frustrated people who first tried to mislead the court and are now misleading the media.”
An RTI filed by advocate Aman Panwar, legal affairs in-charge of the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee, revealed that the Delhi government had spent Rs 14.5 crore on just advertisements, published in newspapers between February 10 and May 10. This means the AAP government spent Rs 16 lakh a day on newspaper ads, in and outside Delhi, Panwar said.
Reacting to the RTI, Information & Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley had said that excessive publicity has become a tool of “political bribery.”
Political rivals have accused the AAP government of ‘wasting’ public money for self-promotion through advertisements in different mediums.