Dignity is the word which rightly suits the Atal Bihari Vajpayee family who have decided to vacate the lutyens bunglow just months after the former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee passed away following illness.
The former Prime Minister Vajpayee was given a bunglow in Krishna Menon Marg where he lived with his foster daughter Namita Bhattacharya, her husband Ranjan Bhattacharya and their daughter Niharika. Vajpayee who had no family of his own had adopted Namita has her daughter. Since time he served as the Prime Minister of India, the family lived together and Ranjan Bhattacharya was even working with Vajpayee as OSD in PMO.
After Vajpayee demitted the office in 2004, they were living in the Krishna Menon Marg. Namita Bhattacharya took care of Vajpayee after his health deteriorated since 2008-2009. But now after his death, Namita has written to the PMO conveying the family’s wish to give up the Krishna Menon Marg given to Vajpayee and move to a private residence. She has also refused to take the SPG security though the law entitles them to hold protection from elite forces to immediate family members of Prime Ministers. In her letter she highlighted that the SPG security was intrusive and expressed she did not want to cause inconvenience to the public.
Her gesture of humility and humbleness is something many politicians will have to learn and especially the one family which has occupied 4 bunglow in lutyens Delhi.
In India, while every citizen follows one rule, the Gandhi’s have a special provision made for themselves. They get bail in 8 minutes even after looting thousands of crores, while common man has to wait for years for petty thefts. Robert Vadra who doesn’t hold any official posts in government or hasn’t even won a municipal elections gets special VIP pass in all airports. This man who has been accused in various scams, loot and tax frauds is treated a VIP while honest man will have to stand in queues in airports and undergo security check.
Sonia Gandhi stays in a Bungalow which is bigger than the one Prime Minister stays. It was first given to Late Prime Minister Sri Lal Bahadur Shastri after he succeeded Jawaharlal Nehru. Later Rajiv Gandhi allocated this bunglow for himself but stayed in 7 RCR (Lok Kalyan Marg). But after Rajiv Gandhi’s death and V P Singh government came to power, the 7 RCR was made the official residence of the Prime Minister.
Sonia Gandhi should have vacated the house after Rajiv Gandhi’s death as she was not entitled to stay in the house. But she continued to stay and used all benefits. Later Rahul Gandhi was given another Bungalow with higher grade than what an MP is entitled to get. But that was not the end, Sonia Gandhi made sure, her daughter Priyanka Gandhi her husband Robert Vadra were also given Bungalows in the heart of Delhi even though they did not officially hold any government position.
The rent for these huge bungalows is given by government which is nothing but tax payers money. These Bungalows have more than 6-7 rooms, conference and meeting halls, gym and recreational facilities, huge lawn and parking for multiple cars. The Bungalows also have servants, maids, cooks and gardeners who are all paid by government. The rent of these houses is over 5 lakh and apart from rent the maintenance cost itself crosses over 20-30 lakh every year.
But the audacity of Nehru-Gandhi family grew to such extent that they had given a bunglow to Robert Vadra’s mother Maureen Vadra along with security cover secretly in the National Capital for almost 10-12 years even though she was no way related to India or Indian government.
Priyanka Gandhi had even refused to pay rent claiming she had no money.
The bunglow the Congress is holding as their headquarters in Akbar road was suppose to be vacated 6 years back according to directions of the Supreme court after the Congress party was allocated a new land for their party office. But since 6 years the congress has not vacated the Bungalow and is trying to snatch the government’ s land.
So, these shameless people will have to learn something from Vajpayee’s family which has decided to vacate their bunglow just months after Vajpayee’s death.