Hospitality junket as MPs head for Digboi in Assam

Vol 7, PW 14 (24 Sep 03) News in Brief

No state-owned oil company enjoys hosting a group of MPs.

Usually they expect to be treated like visiting royalty, shown due deference and showered with valuable gifts. But soon IOC will have to prepare for such a visit.

On 6th October it expects a 15-member panel of MPs from parliament's 'Estimates Committee' in Guwahati for a visit to "discuss environmental pollution issues" with officials charged with the Digboi refinery. IOC will have to receive the MPs at Guwahati railway station or airport and organise hospitality.

Official instructions governing such visits stipulate that, "serving of liquor or giving of costly gifts is strictly prohibited." However, IOC officials expect the exact opposite. They also expect that each MP will demand to be separately chauffer-driven around, instead of sharing his car with another MP, as the rules say.

Otherwise, IOC is happy with the official guideline that, "no inconvenience is caused to MPs, that necessary facilities are provided and that the place of stay is clean and the rooms tidy."