The expenditure given under the transparency law RTI is combined figure of travel expenses by the Commissioners and their staff.
    
The domestic travel expenditure also saw a marginal increase from Rs 63.86 lakh in 2008-09 to Rs 70.80 lakh in 2012-13, the reply to SC Agrawal said.
    
Former Chief Election Commission SY Quraishi took maximum 23 foreign trips as panel chief and as member of the Commission during 2008-12, the data provided since 2008 shows.
    
He undertook travels to Sweden, the United States of America, Thailand, South Africa, Egypt, Chile, the United Kingdom, Jordan, South Korea, Russia, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Belgium, Pakistan, Bhutan, Indonesia, Nigeria and Kenya.     

He was followed by Director General of the Panel Akshay Rout who made 18 trips abroad. Former CEC N Gopalaswami made four foreign trips while his successor Navin Chawala made nine trips. VS Sampath had undertaken 10 trips while HS Brahma undertook five trips.
    
The reply said Commissioners undertook these trips to attend lectures, discuss bilateral issues, as observers in election process of that country or to attend multi-lateral meetings.
    
"During foreign travel, accommodation and travel are provided as per their entitlement. The administrative approval for the visit is accorded by the Election Commission of India. However, all the requisite clearances are obtained from the Ministry of Law, Ministry of External Affairs and FCRA division of Ministry of Home Affairs, as the case may be," it said.

(Agencies)

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