HindustanTimes Sat,27 Dec 2014

Kejriwal rents house in Civil Lines, claims it was ‘offered’ to him

Faizan Haidar, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, June 21, 2014
First Published: 09:15 IST(21/6/2014) | Last Updated: 09:21 IST(21/6/2014)

The house, which the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal claimed on Friday was ‘offered’ to him at north Delhi’s posh Civil Lines, was actually provided by a broker on rent.

Kejriwal had tweeted on Friday evening: “I have finally decided upon a house offered by Sh Naren Jain in Civil Lines area. Thanks Naren ji.” This gave an impression that the house was offered to him for free or for a nominal amount, just the way the Hanuman Road property was offered to the party for office space.

But Naren Bhikhu Jain, owner of the property, told Hindustan Times that the house was not ‘offered’, and in fact his broker told him that someone had agreed to rent his four-bedroom house.

The house is located next to a property which has been in the news for a dispute between author Salman Rushdie and Jain.

“The house was vacant for nine years and I was looking for a tenant since none of my family members wanted to shift there. It is only after my broker informed me I got to know that Kejriwal was interested in taking the house on rent. I will meet him soon to fix the rent,” said Jain. 

Kejriwal’s office also sent out a press release on Friday evening, thanking Jain for offering his house to Kejriwal. The release said Kejriwal will shift in this house after repair and renovation and the rent of the house will be decided mutually.

Jain clarified that he was not going to offer his house “for free or at a discounted rate” but he can consider giving some leverage to Kejriwal as he is a “celebrity”.

Kejriwal is staying at a government house at Tilak Lane, which was allotted to him when he was the chief minister. Despite resigning as the chief minister within 49 days, he continued to stay there since his daughter was to appear for class XII board examinations.

According to sources, Kejriwal’s wife has already surrendered the Kaushambi house where they had been staying before shifting to Tilak Lane.

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