The Public Works department (PWD) has turned down a request from Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to remove the air-conditioners from his 6 Flagstaff Road residence in North Delhi’s Civil Lines area. He expected to shift here soon. The department has conveyed that removing air-conditioners would leave holes in the walls and would mean extra work to close them.
Sources in the department told Newsline that a verbal request from the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) was made to the department on Saturday to remove the AC s from the five-bedroom house since Kejriwal reportedly does not use the facility.
Sources said at first, this put officials in a tight spot since there are both window and split ACs in the house and filling the holes left behind would take time.
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“Removing the ACs altogether would mean redesigning the house. The house had been lying vacant for the last one-and-a-half years, but is in excellent condition. We have given the house a fresh coat of paint and cleaned it,” said a senior PWD official.
So in a verbal communication later, the PWD informed the CMO that it would be unable to fulfil the request and that if Kejriwal wanted, the connections for the AC could be disconnected or that he could simply not use it, sources in the CMO said.
The house consists of five bedrooms —- three with attached bathrooms. The premises has a front lawn and side lawns and a kitchen garden at the rear. The nearly 5,000 sqm bungalow also consists of an office area, which can accommodate 40 people.
The house was previously occupied by a Deputy Secretary in the Vidhan Sabha. Prior to this, it was occupied by Vidhan Sabha speaker Yoganand Shastri.
Sources in the CMO said even at his present residence at Kaushambi, Kejriwal only has a window AC, in his parents’ room. Even at his residence on Tilak lane, where he was staying during his previous stint as chief minister, he had a window AC but never used it.