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Outgoing ministers, MPs still packing up, hotel rooms booked for incoming

At least 31 bungalows of Types VII and VIII are currently occupied by ministers and MPs not part of the new LS.

Written by Vijaita Singh | New Delhi |
May 22, 2014 1:16:49 am

Staring at an accommodation crisis for the fresh lot of Lok Sabha MPs and soon-to-be made ministers, the urban development (UD) ministry has booked rooms in Delhi’s Ashoka and Leela Palace hotels — to be occupied until the homes reserved for them are vacated by members of the last Lok Sabha.

As a contingency plan, type VII bungalows, especially in Tughluq Lane, Harish Chandra Lane and Telegraph Lane in Lutyens’s Delhi, which are generally reserved for MPs, have been refurbished and kept ready — in case the Type VIII bungalows meant for ministers of cabinet rank are not vacated soon enough.

UPA ministers have a month from May 26 — the day the new government will be sworn in — to vacate their homes. At least 31 bungalows of Types VII and VIII, considered the best, are currently occupied by ministers and MPs who are not a part of the new Lok Sabha.

A majority of the 543 MPs elected last week are first-timers.

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While homes for the Speaker, leader of opposition, and ministers are allotted by the UD ministry, accommodation for MPs is handled by the Lok Sabha secretariat, which has its own pool of bungalows and flats.

“Once the bungalows are vacated, they will be renovated and changed as per the requirements of the new MPs. That will take some time as well,” a senior government official said.

The ministry also plans to send eviction notices to MPs and ministers who have refused to let go of their homes for long. Notices went out to two MPs recently. The ministry has prepared a list of bungalows available with it, which it will hand over to the new UD minister.

“We have also made a list of decisions made by the Cabinet Committee on Accommodation (CCA) of the UPA governments. Some bungalows were turned into memorials, and occupants of some were given extensions. This is in the nature of stocktaking, and the new government can choose to change or retain the policy,” the official said.

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