Prince Andrew’s jaunt to Mumbai slum in private plane backed by Fergie

Sarah Ferguson has shown her support for Prince Andrew after his trip to an Indian slum on a private plane was slammed by critics.

The Duchess of York tweeted her praise for her former husband after his costly trip to Mumbai’s Dharavi slum – the setting for the hit film Slumdog Millionaire – as part of an official tour of India to mark Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee was blasted for its extravagance when he chose to shun a commercial flight for the journey.

She wrote on twitter: “Welcome back the The Duke from India. Congrats to his team for a gruelling trip. It was his idea many months ago to visit Kohima (sic).”

The cost of Prince Andrew’s travel during his trip is thought to have been around £80,000 while the royal – nicknamed ‘Airmiles Andy’ for his love of expensive trips – has also been slammed for snubbing free accommodation to stay in a costly hotel suite.

Labour MP Paul Flynn said: “Jetting into a slum on a private plane sends out a terrible message about this country. It is an act of quite extraordinary crassness to spray money around in this way in an area where people live in such poverty.”

He added that the hotel bill was “a scandalous waste of public funds” and said: “To ask taxpayers to foot the bill for a hotel where perfectly good accommodation was already available is unacceptable.”

“How long will Prince Andrew be allowed to go on embarrassing the country at taxpayers’ expense?”