Was Prime Minister Narendra Modi part of a Ramlila troupe before entering politics? That's one of the many questions that were raised by applicants under the Right To Information Act, The Indian Express reported on Tuesday.
The report added that to that particular question, the Prime Minister's Office responded saying, "Information sought is not part of record."
The PMO, for its part, the report added, has been posting the queries and their replies on its website.
You can read them HERE or scroll down to read...
Here are some of these queries and the PMO's reply to them:
1) PM's kitchen expenses: According to the report, one applicant sought information about “how many and which type of cylinder” were “used in (the PM’s) kitchen” in October 2014 and May 2015. Not stopping there, the applicant in question also wanted the “copies of bills of cylinders” and “copies of bills and spices” bought in May 2015. The PMO, according to the report, said in reply: “The kitchen expense of the Prime Minister is personal in nature and not incurred on government account.”
2) Changing the PM's designation: Another applicant, according to the report, wished to see records and documents which showed that PM Modi was, in fact, the "Prime Servant of India and not the Prime Minister". To this, the PMO replied: “There is no proposal to change the official designation of PM.”
3) PM's sick and casual leaves: Another query, said the report, asked about the number of sick, casual and health leaves availed by prime ministers in the last 10 years. To this, the report said that the PMO revealed that till that date, no leaves had been availed by PM Modi since taking over the office. The report added that there was one more query asking whether the prime minister had been on leave during the Bihar Assembly polls last year. To this, the PMO replied: “Tours on election campaign are not official.”
4) PM's mobile number: One enterprising applicant, according to the report, asked whether one could get access to the prime minister's mobile number under the RTI. The PMO replied: “The PMO has not given any mobile phone to Prime Minister.”
5) PM's iftar parties: The report added that one query asked after the number of iftar parties PM Modi had attended in 2014 and 2015. The PMO's blunt answer to that was "none".
6) Picnics for PMO staff: To top it all off, the report said that one applicant asked whether the Principal Secretary to the PM, Nripendra Misra, had ever "taken his colleagues in the PMO on a picnic". The applicant in question would not be satisfied with a yes or no answer. Seeking further details, the applicant also wanted to know "who all went, how much money was spent, were family members also invited on such excursion...". The applicant was also interested in the picnic's menu and whether it had been ordered from an external caterers. The report said that the PMO made it clear that Misra had never organised any picnic or excursion.