SC asks govts if former PMs, CMs, prez entitled to govt bungalows

SC asks govts if former PMs, CMs, prez entitled to govt bungalows

The Supreme Court on Wednesday asked the Centre and states to explain their stand if former presidents, ex-prime ministers and former chief ministers were entitled to continue occupying government accommodation.

The apex court, hearing a challenge to the amendments to an Uttar Pradesh legislation allowing ex-chief ministers of the state to continue occupying government bungalows, left it open to the Centre and states to appear before it and express their views.

A bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and R Banumathi took into account the suggestions by senior advocate Gopal Subramaniam as amicus curiae, who said that when persons holding top constitutional posts demit office, they were like ordinary private citizens and not entitled to official accommodation.

"On a consideration of the views expressed by the amicus curiae, we are of the opinion that we should leave it open to the law officer(s) of the Union Government and the states concerned who may have a similar legislation/executive instructions with the option of appearing before the court on the next date fixed," the bench said.

The court fixed the matter for hearing on March 13.

NGO 'Lok Prahari' had challenged the Uttar Pradesh government's law passed by the previous government that allowed former chief ministers to occupy bungalows.

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