According to data obtained under the Right To Information (RTI) Act plea, the Maharashtra government has paid around INR 1.40 crores to private hospitals towards the treatment of coronavirus for its ministers ever since the pandemic began.
However, it has come to light that 18 of them have taken treatment at private hospitals and cleared their bills.
As per reports, the state government cleared bills worth INR 41.38 lakhs for Bombay Hospital, INR 26.27 lakhs to Lilavati Hospital and INR 15.37 lakhs to Breach Candy Hospital.
Of the total, five ministers have a spending over INR 10 lakhs each, reports stated.
Among them, health minister Rajesh Tope spent the maximum amount of INR 34.40 lakhs followed by energy minister Nitin Raut INR 17.63 lakhs, rural development minister Hasan Mushrif INR 14.56 lakhs, Abdul Sattar INR 12.56 lakh, Jitendra Awhad INR 11.76 lakh, Chhagan Bhujbal INR 9.03 lakh, Sunil Kedar INR 8.71 lakh, Jayant Patil INR 7.30 lakh, Subhash Desai INR 6.97 lakh, and Anil Parab INR 6.79 lakh. The lowest amount – INR 26,520 – was spent by minority affairs minister Nawab Malik.
Clarifying on his expenses, Rajesh Tope explained that the bills were for his mother and not him.
However, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) criticised the ruling MVA government for allowing its ministers to take treatment at private hospitals.