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Arbitrary And Unprecedented: Raghav Chadha Slams BJP After Court Setback On Bungalow

NEW DELHI: Aam Adami Party (AAP) MP Raghav Chadha on Friday said that the cancellation of his allotted bungalow is ‘arbitrary and unprecedented’. In his statement, the AAP MP has also alleged that the cancellation was done at the “dictates of the BJP to further their political motives and vested interest”. In a setback for AAP Rajya Sabha MP Raghav Chadha, a Delhi court has ruled that he has no right to continue to occupy the government bungalow given to him after the allotment was cancelled. The court has lifted the interim stay granted to Chadha.

“It is unprecedented in more than 70 years of history of Rajya Sabha that a sitting Rajya Sabha member is sought to be removed from his duly allotted accommodation where he has been residing for a while and more than 4 years of his tenure as Rajya Sabha member are still remaining,” Chadha said. He further said that there are many irregularities in the order and the subsequent steps were taken by the Rajya Sabha Secretariat in ‘clear contravention of rules and regulations’.

“The manner of the entire exercise leaves me with no option but to believe that these have been carried out at the dictates of BJP to further their political motives and vested interest in order to scuttle and stifle the political criticism raised by the vocal parliamentarians like me,” he added. The AAP MP also said that the allotment of the said accommodation was done by the Chairman of Rajya Sabha himself after taking into consideration all the factors peculiar to him.

Chadha further said that cancelling the accommodation subsequently without any cause or reason signals that the entire suo moto exercise was undertaken to wrongfully target and victimize him. “This along with my suspension as a Member of Parliament, which was initiated by the treasury benches, leaves no doubt that the BJP is leaving no stone unturned to target vocal Members of Parliament. This amounts to unwarranted interference in the due discharge of their functions as the Representatives of the House and hits a rock bottom of vendetta politics,” he added.

To buttress his claim, Chadha pointed out that many of his neighbours were first-time MPs who had been allotted the exact same accommodation above their entitlement and took the names of Sudhanshu Trivedi of the BJP, Danish Ali of the Bahujan Samaj Party, Rakesh Sinha and former MP Roopa Ganguly, who was the previous occupant of the bungalow that had been allotted to him.

“Interestingly, about 118 out of 240 Rajya Sabha Members are living in accommodations above their entitlement but selectively targeting and interfering with vocal representatives, who are giving a strong opposition to BJP on the floor of the house and maintaining a healthy democracy, is a sorry state of affairs for the nation,” Raghav Chadha added.

“Needless to say, I will continue to raise the voice of the people of Punjab and India fearlessly, irrespective of the costs involved,” the AAP leader said. Chadha was given a Type 6 bungalow in July last year and had requested the Rajya Sabha Chairman for a bigger, Type 7 accommodation, which was allotted to him in September that year. In March, however, the secretariat had cancelled the allotment, arguing that the first-time MP was not entitled to a bungalow of that grade.

The AAP MP was asked to vacate the bungalow, which is in central Delhi’s Pandara Road, and had moved Delhi’s Patiala House court against the order. The court had granted an interim stay on April 18. Lifting the stay on Friday, the Patiala House court said Chadha could not claim an absolute right to occupy the bungalow.

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