Former Uttar Pradesh CMs cannot retain official bungalows, says SC; strikes down clause

May 7:The Supreme Court on Monday struck down a clause in the Uttar Pradesh Ministers (Salaries, Allowances and Miscellaneous provisions) (Amendment) Bill-2016 which allowed former chief ministers of the state to continue occupying government bungalows after demitting office. A three-judge bench, headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi, called the provision arbitrary and discriminatory. The bench also observed that it violated the constitutional concept of equality.
The bench was hearing a PIL filed by Uttar Pradesh-based NGO 'Lok Prahari' which challenged the amendments made by the then Akhilesh Yadav government to 'UP Ministers (Salaries, Allowances and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1981'.
"A government residence shall be allotted to a former Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, at his/her request, for his/her life time, on payment of such rent as may be determined from time to time by the Estate Department," the Bill had stated.
The Bill was introduced after the top court on August 1, 2016, ordered the eviction of official bungalows allotted to six former CMs within two months. The order came after it found that the 1997 rules of allotment, introduced by the state, were in contravention of the 1981 Act. Then chief minister Akhilesh Yadav, in his written 'Statement of Objects and Reasons', had said, "In view of the security requirements of the former chief ministers, it has been decided to provide for allotment of official residence to them in the aforesaid Act."
The amendments in the law enabled former chief ministers of the state, including Rajnath Singh, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Mayawati, to retain government bungalows in that capacity. Agencies
Source: Agencies



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