It has been three days since Arvind Kejriwal took over as Delhi’s chief minister but he still lives in his residence in neighbouring Kaushambi in Uttar Pradesh.
Aam Aadmi Party sources said they were yet to identify a house that meets the requirements laid down by the chief minister. Sources said Kejriwal had liked the house allotted to him during his 49-day rule in 2014. The Tilak Lane bungalow, however, was allotted to somebody else after Kejriwal surrendered it in July 2014.
“He is not interested in a big bungalow. He is keen on a small 3-4 bedroom house with a lawn where he could meet people who call on him,” said an AAP functionary requesting anonymity. He said Kejriwal wants to live in his own constituency (New Delhi) and is looking for a house in one of the government colonies in the area.
During her 15-year term as chief minister of Delhi, Sheila Dikshit lived in two different houses. She stayed in a duplex bungalow on Mathura Road opposite Pragati Maidan till 2004 and then moved to a palatial 3, Moti Lal Nehru Marg bungalow, which had five bedrooms, huge lawns, servant quarters and office space for her personal staff. The Moti Lal Nehru Marg house has now been allotted to former PM Manmohan Singh.
Two BJP chief ministers, Madan Lal Khurana and Sahib Singh Verma, were allotted duplex houses at Sham Nath Marg in Civil Lines area in North Delhi.
Sources said at least two AAP ministers — health minister Satyendra Jain and food and civil supplies minister Asim Ahmed Khan — are unlikely to move to an official accommodation as they prefer to stay in their own constituencies they represent.
“But we’ll definitely need a house for deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia. He has tremendous work load and will need space for his staff. Though he is yet to make his priorities clear, he will probably need a similar govt flat that was allotted to him in Mayur Vihar Phase II last year,” a senior AAP functionary said.
Sisodia was given two flats in B block in Mayur Vihar Phase 2 last year for his residence as well as for a camp office.
Interestingly, six bungalows constructed by the public works department in 2013 continue to lie vacant. The Congress ministers had refused to move into those bungalows near Raj Niwas in Civil Lines area, arguing that the 2013 assembly elections were just round the corner and they were required to be closer and accessible to their electorate. AAP sources said the other three ministers may move into those bungalows. “But nothing has been decided about it,” an AAP functionary said.