You must have seen these days hoardings and billboards around you that read ‘Kar chori se ladai mein, mera paisa surakshit hai (In the fight against tax evasion, my money is safe)’.
These billboards and hoardings featuring Prime Minister Narendra Modi at almost all flying corners of cities and towns have details on the deadline to submit scrapped currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1000.
Do you know how much money has been spent on this campaign to promote the demonetisation drive?
It is Rs 10 crore. Surprised? Don’t be because the government’s advertisement budget for demonetisation awareness campaign to “quell the fear in minds of people on their hard earned money” is pretty low compared to the expenditure on other government schemes.
Similarly, the government – if a report published in Mint is to be believed – spent in excess of Rs 100 crore to promote its Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (clean India mission) launched by PM Modi on October 2 this year.
“A cost of 23.5 percent of the total advertising budget of Rs 170 crore was allocated to the ministry of information and broadcasting for the promotion of the drive. And spending on the campaign has increased over the years as the government releases more ads, including television commercials, to promote sanitation and end open defecation,” says the report citing a person close to the development.
Last year, the government reportedly extravagantly spent an extra amount of Rs 55 crore on advertising completion of its first year in office and then International Yoga Day—a pet project of the prime minister.
The Central government has spent more than Rs 1,100 crore in two and a half years (from June 1, 2014 to August 31, 2016) on advertisements, according to information provided by the Union Information and Broadcasting Ministry to activist Ramveer Singh under the Right to Information.
On breaking down the figure, it comes to around Rs 1.4 crore per day.
Notably, this spending is only for advertisements on television, the Internet and other electronic media. It does not include other platforms like print advertisements, hoardings, posters, booklets and calendars. The total sum will be much higher if these costs are also included.
It is worth mentioning to note here that the Delhi government led by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had come under heavy criticism earlier this year after a similar RTI query revealed that it spent Rs 16 lakh a day on advertising.
Image and Article Source : India Times