23 sept 2011
Taxpayers subsidising guns of 750 MPs, VIPs
The list of MPs with a yen for guns cuts across party lines:
- Congress leader Jagdish Tytler bought a .32 Browning Pistol in 1989 for 19,000 rupees (the market price is Rs. 1,60,000).
- BJP compatriot Vijay Kumar Malhotra who bought a .22 P Benetla Pistol in April 1990 for Rs. 3,500 (the international price is $400)
- UP’s Chief Minister Mayawati the RTI information in 1991 shows that she paid Rs. 4,900 for an Arminius revolver while an MP. Shivraj Singh Chauhan, the current Chief Minister of MP also bought an Arminius in 1993 for Rs. 4,900. The market price for the revolver ranges from Rs. 1.25 to 1.75 lakh.
- Congress leader Janardhan Dwivedi bought a S&W .32 bore revolver for Rs. 1,45,000 (the market price is Rs. 1.5 to 2.5 lakh)
- Uma Bharti, MP’s former CM also bought a S&W revolver for Rs. 13,000 in 1999. She is joined by M S Gill, who was India’s Chief Election Commissioner in 1999. He purchased an S&W revolver for Rs. 24,750
- But perhaps what is most interesting of all both former BJP MPs Ashok Argal and Faggan Singh, currently in jail for the cash-for-votes scam bought .32 Webley Scott revolvers for Rs. 9,000 in 1997
Some believe that that this practice of providing discounted weapons to VIPs should stop. Says Gopal Prasad an activist: “This policy (of proving weapons at discounted rates) is unfair. These should be first given to security forces, why should they be given to MPs.”
The other issue is of course money. Every year hundreds and thousands of crores are spent to secure our MPs. Despite this many of them have literally taken security into their own hands, but through the discounted rates, the MPs have managed to pass on the bill to the taxpayer