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President Barack Obama India Trip Spurs Criticism

The trip of US President Barack Obama to India is earning criticism from right-wing opponents, Republicans as well as environmental groups. According to a Mumbai government source, Obama will reportedly spend some US$200 million per day in the trip which is so far the biggest spending ever by any US President.

$200 million for the Obama trip to India includes security detail, personnel cost, airfare, fuel, food and accommodation and other necessary costs to cover the visit. However, a source from the White House said that this is highly exaggerated since the cost covers "on-going" costs like salaries of personnel who will be paid whether they are on the trip or not.

The White House also said that not all will be covered by the airfare and accommodation like the cost of some businessmen will not totally be covered because they are there for business purposes as well.

According to Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, the cost of the Obama trip to India is "comparable" to what the White House has provided for past presidents in similar circumstances. Gibbs however would not get into the costs of protecting President Obama.

Wall Street Journal reacted on the cost and featured an article which says that the figure circulating is "demonstrably incorrect" even without considering the $200 million claim.

The Obama India trip will start Saturday, November 6 and will last for three days.

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