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The Delhi High Court has directed former Janata Dal (United) President and former Rajya Sabha member Sharad Yadav to handover the central government bungalow allotted to him in the capacity of a Member of Parliament.
Yadav had lost access to various perks and facilities available to a sitting Member of Parliament in 2017, following his disqualification. However, he had challenged the disqualification in a plea which is still pending adjudication.
As an interim measure he had sought relief against the discontinuation of the perks and facilities until his disqualification plea is decided by the Court. A single bench had granted him the relief following which he continued to occupy the bungalow for another 5 years, till 2022.
The centre moved an urgent application seeking vacation of this interim relief stating that Yadav had continued to occupy the bungalow for 5 years due to the order.
Vacating the interim relief, the division bench held, "Since the petitioner stands disqualified and is not being required to discharge any responsibility or function as a Member of Rajya Sabha, there can be no justification for him to retain the official accommodation, the Court held.
The bench of Acting Chief Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Navin Chawla said that the "provisions of the perks, including the residential accommodation to the Members of Parliament, or for that matter, to any other functionary of the State, are so provided so as to enable the functionary to discharge his or her functions efficiently."
Passing the order the bench explained that governmental accommodation is a perk attached to the office of Member of Parliament and not a property "personally conferred upon any person dehors the office.
Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain informed Court that the bungalow has been surrendered by the Rajya Sabha Secretariat into the Central Pool and the same stands allotted to a Union Minister.
The High Court thereby vacated its earlier order and directed Yadav to hand over possession of the house within 15 days.
Cause Title: Shri Sharad Yadav vs Shri Ram Chandra Prasad and Anr
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