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Forgetting how he plundered public money, Omar praises Pakistan PM
More than 12 crore were spent on Omar's helicopter fleet as JK CM
7/23/2019 12:16:56 AM
Early Times Report

Jammu, July 22: As NC vice president and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah praised Pakistan PM Imran for saving tax payers's money during later's US visit, Omar has perhaps forgotten his tenure when he plundered peoples' money for his own luxury.
"He saved his country money it didn't need to spend AND didn't wear his ego on his sleeve as most "leaders" do. Remind me again why that's a bad thing. This reflects badly on the American establishment rather than on @ImranKhanPTI IMO," the former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister tweeted.
Khan is currently on a three-day visit to the US. The cricketer-turned-politician, who took a commercial flight instead of a private jet to cut down on expenses, was instead received by his Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and others at the Dulles International Airport.
Now, when Omar is out to praise Imran Khan for saving the hard earned money of the tax payers, is he of the notion that people have forgotten how he as the Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir drained the state exchequer for his own luxuries.
The VIP sorties in state aircraft and helicopters cost Jammu and Kashmir nearly Rs 12 crore from 2009 to the year 2013.
The expenditure incurred on the state aircraft and helicopters during the last three years since 2010 has been Rs 1,196.45 lakh, Omar as a CM said in a reply to a cut motion of JKNPP member Harshdev Singh in the Assembly.
The year-wise expenditure was Rs 440.55 lakh in 2010-11, Rs 360.19 lakh in 2011-12 and Rs 395.71 lakh in 2012-13 upto February 2013, he said, adding, this includes fuel charges, insurance of the helicopters and aircraft; and landing, parking and maintenance charges. Jammu and Kashmir has one King Air-350 Aircraft and two helicopters of models Bell-407 and Augusta-109E.
In the year 2011, Omar Abdullah as Chief Minister had run up a maintenance and operation bill of Rs 11.5 crore for his helicopter sorties from 2009 till 2011, revealed the state civil aviation department in response to an RTI application.
According to the RTI response, the distance travelled has been 2 km at the minimum - from Nehru helipad in Srinagar to Sheri Kashmir International Convocation complex (SKICC) on the banks of Dal Lake. In two years, Abdullah has flown between SKICC and Nehru helipad four times.
Gulmarg had been a favourite haunt for Omar, according to the travel log. On August 14, 2009, he made seven sorties between Srinagar and Gulmarg along with "guests" whom the civil aviation department did not name.
Now, out of power, Omar's cry for saving peoples' money looks farce and akin to cry of a thief. As they say and rightly say so- Omar must set his own house in order before sermonising premiers of other countries.
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