It has come to light that Diyanet TV, a television station owned and operated by the Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet), has rented an excursion boat for its broadcasts during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan for a price of 35,000 Turkish Liras (approximately $4,200) a day, daily Sözcü reported on May 7.
The luxury boat is docked in front of the Dolmabahçe Mosque having a view of the Bosphorus. The boat's inside has been turned into a studio from where Diyanet officials broadcast their daily Ramadan programs.
Diyanet TV, which was established in 2018, has increased its capital stock from 275,000 liras to 25.2 million liras in a period of three years.
Diyanet is known to be granted extravagant funds through the state budget.
Daily Birgün reported in March that the public agency was allocated a budget of 54.6 million liras out of the state's 2021 budget, surpassing 119 universities' budgets.
The only schools that received more funding than the Diyanet were Boğaziçi University, Istanbul University and Cerrahpaşa, Marmara University, Istanbul Medeniyet University and Necmettin Erbakan University.
Diyanet exceeded its 2018 allotted budget by 3 billion TL, with 99 percent of the budget being spent on personnel salaries, according to a September 2019 report by the Court of Accounts.