NEW DELHI: The Central government spent about Rs.38 lakh on the 36-hour State visit by former U.S. President Donald Trump in 2020 in accommodation, meals, logistics etc, revealed an RTI by Mishall Bhathena.
On his maiden visit to India, Donald Trump accompanied by his wife Melania, daughter Ivanka, son-in-law Jared Kushner and many top officials had visited Ahmedabad, Agra, and New Delhi on February 24-25, 2020.
On February 24, Trump spent three hours in Ahmedabad, where he attended a 22-kilometer roadshow, honoured Mahatma Gandhi at the Sabarmati Ashram, and delivered the "Namaste Trump" address alongside Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the recently constructed Motera Cricket Stadium.
Later that day, Trump took a flight to Agra to see the Taj Mahal. On February 25, he paid a visit to the capital city and had a one-on-one meeting with Naremdra Modi.
One Mishall Bhathena in an RTI asked the External Affairs Ministry for information about all costs incurred by the Indian government during the visit of the US President and First Lady in February 2020, including those for travel, lodging, food, security, and other costs.
After Mishall Bhathena, who had submitted the application on October 24, 2020, did not receive a response, he first appealed, and then he went to the Commission, the last appeals body for RTI issues.
On August 4, 2022, the EAM submitted a document to the Commission, citing COVID-19 as the reason for the delay in providing a response.
"Expenditure by host countries on inbound State Visits by Heads of State/Heads of Government is a well-established practise and in compliance with widely acknowledged norms.