Parting gift: PM won’t have to pay for water, power after retirement

While there is an exemption limit set for sitting MPs when it comes to electricity and power bills, no such rule existed for former PMs.

Written by Vijaita Singh | New Delhi | Published:May 7, 2014 2:18 am
Renovation work at the PM’s residence.	PRAVEEN KHANNA Renovation work at the PM’s residence. PRAVEEN KHANNA

The UPA government has ensured Prime Minister Manmohan Singh retires in comfort. As a parting gift to Singh, who has expressed his desire to move into his new house before election results are declared on May 16, the Urban Development Ministry has changed an earlier order, paving the way for free water and electricity for his retirement house at Motilal Nehru Marg.

The order will not only benefit Singh but other former PMs, presidents and vice-presidents who are occupying government bungalows in New Delhi, sources said. Singh has also requested his office to keep everything in the house “frugal”. Singh, who will be entitled to privileges equivalent to the Leader of Opposition, will be able to keep 14 people as his personal staff and get Rs 6,000 per month as sundry expenditure. He will also have to pay a minimal rent fee of Rs 1,200 per month, said an official.

While there is an exemption limit set for sitting MPs when it comes to electricity and power bills, no such rule existed for former PMs.

Singh, who wants to shift to the bungalow sprawling over 2.5 acres a day before the results are announced, has also requested his office not to exceed the Rs 2.5 lakh expenditure limit for furniture, ACs, refrigerator and other 

“The previous occupant of the house, former Delhi CM Sheila Dikshit, who is presently the governor of Kerala, had 26 ACs fitted in the bungalow. When she left, all ACs were taken away. The PM has requested that not more than four-five ACs be fitted in the Type-VIII bungalow,” said a senior official.

A request had been made to the Central Public Works Department, the agency responsible for upkeep and maintenance of government bungalows, to complete renovation work by April 30 but they missed the deadline. “When Dikshit occupied the house, the entire flooring was done in wood. The PM’s family did not want that and expressed a desire to remove the wooden coating. We removed it but the floor below is damaged. We are afraid we will have to go back to wooden flooring, that’s why the renovation took time,” said the official.

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  1. V
    Vaidhyanathan Sankar
    Nov 28, 2016 at 2:46 am
    It may be recalled that the chairman of the erstwhile planning commission had upgraded his official loos at a colossal cost.. during the UPA regime.
    Reply
    1. B
      Brijesh
      May 7, 2014 at 9:04 am
      No problem with his retirement home but what about the recovery of losses causes by him?
      Reply
      1. K
        Kalyanasundaram
        May 7, 2014 at 10:53 am
        Can anyone tell me why on earth we give all these benefits to the Netas? Just give them a pay of even 5 lakhs per month and let them find their own space. Why give them a bungalow, free water, free electricity, and God knows what other benefits? Can you imagine what will happen in 100 years? A city full of retired Netas, their progeny, etcetera.
        Reply
        1. K
          Kalyanasundaram
          May 7, 2014 at 11:00 am
          Politicians are the modern day chors. They are leeches. We need politicians who have some self-respect and not sucking the blood of the Tax Payers for ever.
          Reply
          1. m
            m. abraham
            May 7, 2014 at 5:25 am
            Before getting ready for retirement, why he did not have the responsibility to talk about Govt. Development activities since last 10 years under him during election time. His duty he left to Rahul or somebody. It was better if he had resigned one year back and someone took over his position so that he would have been in a better position to explain development to Shri Modi.
            Reply
            1. K
              Kapil Dev Suri
              May 8, 2014 at 10:17 am
              A person who was governor of reserve bank and adviser to the ministry and drawing lacks rupee ry and perks is given free electricity while the poor man who has no income electric city is disconnected on non payment of bill . IS it democratic state or italy Maharani state where no law prevails. It is reward of service to dynasty in spite of insult meeting out to him. by renderind service to dynasty family as a reward
              Reply
              1. M
                Man Singh
                May 7, 2014 at 10:13 am
                Five ACs (or 25 ), free water and power, 14 servants (what does this army do??) .... AND A MONTHLY 'RENT' OF RS 1200/-. THESE POLS SURLY KNOW HOW TO FREELOAD!!!BRING BACK THE SAHIBS!!! AT LEAST THEY PERFORMED AND THERE WERE FEWER OF THEM!!!
                Reply
                1. S
                  shahid
                  May 7, 2014 at 11:29 am
                  Sad indeed.
                  Reply
                  1. A
                    amarjeet sharma
                    May 7, 2014 at 9:51 am
                    In this Country Political leaders holding Government positions are so poor that they are unable to pay the facilities they are enjoying. This is wrong. Otherwise these people should refuse the free bees and pay for the benefits they enjoy.When a beggar pays for the water and electric charges, why not these political leaders.
                    Reply
                    1. P
                      Partha Prawal
                      May 7, 2014 at 9:01 am
                      Pathetic... 4-5 ACs and why is that? I am a tax payer of the country and I am paying my taxes to pay the bills of the 'babus'? Shame Shame... APJ Kalam is an example and all the 'babus' must learn from him
                      Reply
                      1. P
                        Purush
                        May 7, 2014 at 6:48 pm
                        26 Ac's for a 4 bed bungalow. And these people and their party calls themselves the messiah of poor. What a shame.
                        Reply
                        1. B
                          Bharatiya
                          May 7, 2014 at 7:40 am
                          Read the w article. Isn't this a joke on the public? Why does he need a bungalow on a 2.5 acre land? And how audacious it seems - he doesn't like wood flooring, it was removed, the floor is damaged, so they are going to put new ones!! And here I am promptly paying my taxes spending nearly 4 hours in traffic for work. I am still unable to build a house for my family. My heart burns to see where my tax money is going?
                          Reply
                          1. R
                            Rampande
                            May 6, 2014 at 11:31 pm
                            A funny country one is living in where a person earning even less than Rs. 5000/- has to pay for everything whereas our mostly corrupt leadership is subsidised or exempt. Shameful to say the least.
                            Reply
                            1. K
                              kiran
                              May 7, 2014 at 9:21 am
                              Sheela Dixit had 15......and most were removed and now 4 left...wooden flooring removed as they did not like it... and will be redone again.... PATHETIC
                              Reply
                              1. L
                                Lion_great
                                May 7, 2014 at 11:06 am
                                Why he is getting such priveleges-- he should be in tihar.....he is traitor and betra the nation. Punish him in front of public for his crimes.
                                Reply
                                1. S
                                  sri
                                  May 7, 2014 at 10:12 pm
                                  This is atrocious!1) huge bungalow for a retired PM, in the most prime part of New Delhi. Can't he stay in a smaller house.. Is it not to lodge all his relatives and privileged friends at the expense of the public? 2) Free water and electricity (???can't he pay these?) 3) He did not like the wooden flooring - so it was chipped away. Then the flooring got damaged, so renovated again! Why this extravaganza ? are we still living in the 'King/Queen/plebiscites' period? 4) 26 ACs enjo by Shiela Dixit (??) May be all the rooms; living halls; kitchen; store rooms; balcony; cellar rooms and even bathrooms would have been AC'd..Who cares, free electricity !!! 5) When she left, all the ACs were taken away? Where to.. to her personal house??ATROCIOUS indeed!
                                  Reply
                                  1. V
                                    Vinay Kumar
                                    May 8, 2014 at 8:30 am
                                    Send him to Jails for corruption of Coalgate and others scams, automatically he will enjoy free powers and water in the jails just like others inmates.
                                    Reply
                                    1. v
                                      v. suryodaya
                                      May 7, 2014 at 9:11 am
                                      The outgoing PM never had power throughout his office; hence, no charges for power is correct. Similarly, his actions shocked no one. Hence, he need not require to pay electricity charges. He always lived under the umbrella of Congress President. Hence, he need not pay water charges. Correct decisions.
                                      Reply
                                      1. D
                                        DR.H.D.WAIKAR
                                        May 7, 2014 at 8:26 am
                                        26 ACS for Sheela Dixit!!!!!!.Horrible .This is taxpayers money.Why do you need 26 ACs in house.And what about electricity bill of Dixit.All these things must be brought out in public domain by news reporters.Politicians are modern days MAHARAJAS.
                                        Reply
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