New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday striked down a Uttar Pradesh Assembly law that granted permanent accommodation to former chief ministers (CMs) of the state, stating that they are not eligible for government residences.
Former CMs currently having government bungalows include Samajwadi Party’s Mulayam Singh Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav and BSP’s Mayawati.
The apex court stated that ex-CMs cannot be granted governmental accommodation since they are no longer holding office and that public office becomes history after a person demits the office and it cannot be the basis for giving government residential accommodation for rest of his/her life.
The Supreme Court’s decision was taken while hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by NGO Lokprahari which challenged the decision of the UP government to allot official bungalows to chief ministers after the end of their tenure in office.
Although the SC verdict is based on the UP law, it would likely have implications on governmental residential accommodations given to former Presidents, Prime Ministers and CMs of other states as well.
All former chief ministers in UP earlier retained the government bungalows, despite a law being passed by the Congress government in 1981 making it compulsory for CMs to vacate their bungalows within 15 days of leaving office. In 2016, the Supreme Court had ordered all former chief ministers to vacate their government-allotted premises, but the UP government passed a bill in the house to legalise their possession.