Tires are an integral part of every vehicle that runs on the surface. Generally, several other engineering bits of a car are more in focus during discussions but a lot of R&D also goes towards selecting the right tires and wheel size. Changing tires regularly is also recommended but mostly only when they start wearing out. Now the reason we are talking about wheels and tires today is a recent RTI enquiry which has brought up surprising information. To cut the story short, M M Mani, Kerala Power Minister, has got the tyres of his vehicle replaced 34 times in 30 months! That’s right, 34 times in 30 months.
The matter came into light when an Ernakulam native filed a Right to Information (RTI) query regarding the money spent by the state exchequer in order to replace the tyres for various ministers in Kerala. The RTI query has definitely revealed some shocking data with the highest amount spent on Kerala’s Power Minister M M Mani’s Toyota Innova Crysta. The next minister in the list is Forest Minister K Raju with 19 tyre replacements. The data reveals that the 19 tyres were replaced on five different occasions in order to make the car ‘fit for use’.
M M Mani’s Toyota Innova Crysta, on the other hand, got as many as 34 tires replaced in a period of 30 months. In comparison, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan car has only 11 tyres in two years. The cost of change of tyres for M M Mani’s Toyota Innova Crysta amounted to Rs 3.4 lakh with each tyre costing around Rs 10,000 to Rs 13,000. His car saw two of its tyres replaced a total of nine times and the other two saw a replacement eight times. The next thing that comes to mind now is what distance this particular Toyota Innova Crysta has covered during this time period.
According to a Facebook post by the minister’s official account, his car has covered over 1.24 lakh km during the mentioned time period. Furthermore, he went on to say that his car covered mostly hilly regions in the state and at high speeds. Mani added that a minister or his staff has no role in changing the tyres of the vehicle and the tourism department is the one in charge of it. Replying to social media trolls who were actively targeting him over this ‘tire yojna’, Mani added that in such a case, saying that a minister made a profit by purchasing additional tyres is a pointless charge. The minister also said that on an average, an Innova car gets Rs 20,000 for its tyres.
While we’ll not comment on whether this case is justified or whether an Innova Crysta could have 34 tyre replacements in 30 months, the maths here does seem to be a bit odd. However, the minister has posted on Facebook that and his car has done over 1.24 lakh km during the said period. Nonetheless, social media trolls are pretty hot on the heels of the minister and several memes have come up highlighting the case in a hilarious way.
For those wondering when a car needs to get its tires changed, the best time to do so is as soon as the tire starts fading away physically. In the minister’s case, there is a possibility that the new tires on his car were of inferior quality and hence worn out more than stock tires.