Beneficiaries include Lalu Prasad, Buta Singh, families K. Karunakaran and Sis Ram Ola, an RTI response has revealed

While several newly appointed Ministers and MPs of the NDA Government wait for official accommodation, it has emerged that as many as 59 former Ministers and bureaucrats can continue in their official bungalows thanks to a decision by the UPA government just before the elections.

Among the beneficiaries are former Union Ministers Lalu Prasad, Buta Singh, the families of the late K. Karunakaran and the late Sis Ram Ola, an RTI response filed by Directorate of Estates under the Ministry of Urban Development has revealed.

According to the Directorate of Estates, the Cabinet Committee for Accommodation (CCA), in the last days of the UPA government in February this year, cleared 59 cases for allotment of government accommodation.

The CCA’s approval lets Mr. Lalu Prasad, who is no longer entitled to a ministerial bungalow, retain the accommodation till October 2014.

Former Union Minister Buta Singh, too, has been allowed to retain his government accommodation on a heavily subsidised rent. In December 2013, Mr. Singh wrote to then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh seeking his intervention to instruct the Urban Development Ministry to lower the rent from the revised amount as per the market value.

After the Directorate of Estates had revised the rent for Mr. Singh’s 11A Teen Murti Marg residence from Rs. 58,500 to Rs. 1,06,603 from January 2014, Mr. Singh, who has Z+ security, wrote to Dr. Singh to help him get a rent-waiver.

According to the information disclosed on the RTI plea filed by activist Subhash Agarwal, former minister Sis Ram Ola’s family has been allowed to retain the Teen Murti Lane bungalow beyond the permissible period, while in the case of late Karunakaran the CCA has given “part” approval to allow the family to stay.

Manipur Governor V.K. Duggal has two government houses in his name.

The Ministry has clarified that Mr. Duggal was allotted a Chanakyapuri bungalow after his other allotment on Uma Shankar Dikshit Marg was cancelled. Amar Singh, former Food Corporation of India head, has also been allowed to retain his accommodation beyond the permissible period.

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