Kerala: Arif Mohammed Khan tops list of Governors with most air travel

Kerala government ministers have alleged that the state was required to shell 20 per cent more than the Budget allotted for his trips

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan (photo: National Herald archives)
Kerala Governor Arif Mohammed Khan (photo: National Herald archives)
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NH National Bureau

Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan topped the list of governors with the most air travel in office. The details released by the State General Administration Department show that Khan was not in the state for 328 out of the 1,095 days he has been the governor. This translates into Khan having been travelling for a year of the three years he has been in office.

According to news reports, the Raj Bhavan had been reluctant to share the information even under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. However, the State department shared the details of the governor's travels between 29 July, 2021, and 1 January, 2024. Khan took over as the Governor of Kerala in September 2019.

Kerala ministers have alleged that the state was required to shell out 20 per cent more than the Budget allotted for his trips. The governor mainly travelled to his home state, Uttar Pradesh, via Delhi or Mangalore. He also frequented Mumbai and Chennai; his other destinations were Gujarat, Telangana, Haryana, Assam, Goa, West Bengal, and Uttarakhand.

According to protocol, the Raj Bhavan has to inform the state department of the governor's travels outside the state.

This state government under the Left Democratic Front and Khan has been on a war path for a few months. On Saturday, Khan was provided with CRPF (Central Reserve Police Force) Z-plus security by the Union home ministry after his impromptu sit-in protest at Kollam where Students' Federation of India (SFI) activists waved black flags near his convoy.

Two days before that, Khan cut short his 61-page policy address ahead of the Budget session of the state Assembly, wrapping up his speech in 1.50 seconds. After reading out the first paragraph, the governor jumped to the last paragraph of the policy address, before winding up the speech. This was one of the shortest policy addresses of a governor in the Kerala Assembly.

In November 2023, the state government filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court seeking appropriate orders against Khan as he had been unreasonably delaying the consideration of at least eight bills that the Assembly had passed.

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