Mumbai Police recovers Rs. 3.55 lakhs from Mumbai Indians for IPL Victory Rally, reveals RTI
Aravind Natarajan 24 June 2019
Mumbai Indians, the winners of this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) shelled Rs. 3.55 lakhs for their victory rally’s security as revealed in a RTI query filed by civic RTI activist Anil Galgali. The victory rally which started from Mumbai Indian’s owner Mukesh Ambani’s house Antilia went all the way to Trident hotel in Nariman Point. 
 
Mr. Galgali’s RTI application asked the Mumbai Police details regarding the designations and the number of officers who were present in the victory rally as part of the security arrangements and also the expenses payable by Mumbai Indians to the State Police. 
 
He filed the RTI with both Mumbai Police and the Traffic Police and received a response to his query on 31st May, which stated that the bill generated was to the tune of Rs3.55 lakhs. This bill was later generated in the name of M/s Indiawin Sports Co., a company under the Ambani Group and this amount was later paid in full on 4th June’19. 
 
The Public Information Officer (PIO) of the Mumbai Police in his response to Mr. Galgali also stated that in one shift, two Police Inspectors (PI), one Assistant PI, two PI and hundred constables were deployed to give security for the rally. 
 
Questioning the legitimacy of the rally, Mr. Galglai pointed out how the entire region comes under the silence zone and therefore no rally could be legally permitted there. Questioning the police department’s actions further, Mr. Galgali observed, “The Mumbai Police has still maintained a discreet silence on the issue of permissions sought. It has not provided any reply pertaining to the query, whether permissions were sought by the organisers or not? Also were permissions given by the police department?” 
 
Mr Galgali has filed a similar RTI recently with the Mumbai Police asking for details on the amount owed to them for security coverage during past IPLs and other tournaments. In response to this query, the PIO of Mumbai Police responded that the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) owes the Mumbai Police an amount of Rs21.34 crores including pending interest of Rs5.61 crore due for providing security during IPL and other major cricket tourneys till 2018. This also includes an amount of Rs1.48 crore which the MCA owes Mumbai Police for security provided during the 2018 edition of IPL.
 
Pointing out how this is a huge win for the RTI act, Mr. Galgali was quoted saying, “The Public Authorities call us RTI users blackmailers and disturbers, but had I not filed this RTI, would the Mumbai Police have even  generated the bill and recovered the charges for security? This goes on to show just how very important the RTI act is to bring transparency and accountability in the system”
 
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