Former chief ministers Mulayam, Akhilesh Yadav move SC for time to vacate official bungalows

Former chief ministers of Uttar Pradesh Mulayam Singh Yadav and his son Akhilesh Yadav have moved the Supreme Court seeking “appropriate” time to vacate their official residences in Lucknow, PTI reported.

The plea has been filed in the backdrop of the May 7 apex court judgment that had struck down an amendment in a state legislation allowing former chief ministers to retain government accommodation even after demitting office.

The father-son duo had earlier moved the UP government seeking two years’ time to vacate their official residences and shifting to their private accommodations in Lucknow.

The former chief ministers, in their plea filed through advocate Garima Bajaj, have sought appropriate time to vacate their official bungalows.

This comes days after the state government served notices to six former chief ministers, who have been occupying sprawling government bungalows in Lucknow, and asked them to vacate them in 15 days.

Six former chief ministers who have been asked to vacate the government bungalows include Samajwadi Party patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav, SP chief Akhilesh Yadav, BSP chief Mayawati, ND Tiwari, BJP leaders Rajnath Singh and Kalyan Singh.

The Supreme Court had on May 7, 2018 struck down the amendment to the Uttar Pradesh Ministers (Salaries, Allowances and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1981 to provide for allotment of government residence to former chief ministers at his/her request for lifetime. Quashing the amendment, the SC had observed that “Section 4(3) of UP Ministers (salaries, allowances & miscellaneous provisions) Act, 2016 is unconstitutional.”

The state government’s move to serve notices to the former chief ministers came a day after Mulayam met chief minister Yogi Adityanath. An official spokesman though had called the meeting a courtesy call, sources aware with the deliberations at the meeting said Yadav discussed the issue of government bungalows on the Vikramaditya Marg here allotted to him and his son Akhilesh Yadav as former chief ministers.

A suggestion for allotment of the two bungalows to leader of opposition in Vidhan Sabha Ram Govind Chaudhary and leader of opposition in Vidhan Parishad Ahmad Hasan was made at the meeting.

Earlier, the Supreme Court had on August 1, 2016 ordered cancellation of allotment of government bungalows to former chief ministers observing that the allotment of houses made to former chief ministers, private bodies and individuals was bad in law. The Akhilesh Yadav led Samajwadi Party government had in 2016 amended the Act, which was challenged by a Lucknow-based non-profit organisation Lokprahari.

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