Former union minister and Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) chief Ajit Singh hung on to his demand that the house allotted to him during the term of UPA2 be converted into a memorial of his father Chaudhary Charan Singh.
The attempt appears a desperate bid to retain an official bungalow in Delhi’s Lutyen’s zone, 12, Tughlaq Road bungalow in Delhi’s Lutyen’s zone — continuing with his illegal occupation of the premises on Monday.
Singh’s strategy at retaining the house is being cloaked in a flawed political strategy aimed at reviving his sagging political fortunes after his party’s severe drubbing in the parliamentary elections.
There already exists a “Samadhi” called the Kisan Ghat in memory of the late Charan Singh, built at a cost of Rs 1.02 crore in 1987.
An official ban on converting official bungalows into memorials of departed leaders has existed since 2000, while Singh had strangely not raised such a demand during his term as union minister in UPA2.
Staring at prospects of political oblivion after having benefitted from the political legacy of his father and former Prime Minister Chaudhary Charan Singh in past decades, the RLD chief seems clutching at straws now.
Seeking to draw political mileage in the specific context of next month’s assembly elections in Haryana, support to the cause of converting the bungalow into a memorial of Charan Singhh has come from unusual quarters including Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda.
Other political leaders including JD(U)’s Nitish Kumar and Samajwadi Party boss Mulayam Singh Yadav have supported the demand. “A meeting of Charan Singh followers belonging to different parties will be held on Tuesday to formulate the future course of action,” a senior RLD leader said.
The gathering — at Jind in Haryana on September 25 — is expected to be attended, by ex-PM HD Deve Gowda, JD (U) leaders Sharad Yadav and Nitish Kumar, Prakash Singh Badal of SAD.