“Kharge Criticizes Modi Govt for Spending on Selfie Booths”

Kharge Slams Government's 'Selfie Booths' at Railway Stations as Taxpayer Money Waste

Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge launched a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government over the establishment of “selfie booths” adorned with the PM’s photographs at railway stations, branding it as an unabashed misuse of public funds. Kharge denounced the move, highlighting that while crucial relief for drought and flood-affected states remains pending, taxpayer money is being lavishly spent on what he termed as “cheap election stunts.”

The criticism arose following revelations by the Central Railway, in response to a Right to Information (RTI) query from a Mumbai-based activist, disclosing the locations of temporary and permanent selfie booths set up at railway stations. The approved costs for these installations amounted to ₹1.25 lakh for temporary booths and ₹6.25 lakh for permanent ones.

Expressing strong disapproval, Kharge condemned what he termed as the “self-obsessed promotion” by the Modi government, labeling the move as an outright waste of public funds. He underscored the stark contrast between the lack of essential aid to states and the conspicuous spending on selfie points bearing the PM’s image.

The Congress leader further criticized the government’s directive to the Armed Forces to install 822 similar selfie points embellished with prominent cut-outs of PM Modi, previously utilizing the sacrifice of soldiers for political purposes.

Reports surfaced in October, indicating that the railway board in Delhi had instructed 19 zonal railways’ general managers to install selfie booths at stations. These installations, featuring durable 3D fibre sculptures, acrylic boards, glass, and integrated lighting, were designed to showcase government initiatives like Skill India, Ujjwala Yojana, and the Chandrayaan Mission.

These installations, crafted from materials like fibre, clay, or Plaster of Paris (PoP), aimed to spotlight various central government initiatives. However, they have come under severe scrutiny for what critics perceive as excessive spending on non-essential infrastructure amid pending crucial allocations for state aid and development.

Kharge’s vehement criticism echoes growing concerns about the allocation of public funds and the prioritization of government spending on such initiatives, particularly when pressing issues like relief for disaster-stricken regions await attention and financial support.

Sources By Agencies

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