Cong leader requested allotment of Priyanka’s bungalow : Puri

NEW DELHI, July 14: Union Urban Development Minister Hardeep Singh Puri on Tuesday said that a “powerful” Congress leader contacted him to request allotment of the government bungalow Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has to vacate to a parliamentarian from the party so that she could stay on.
On her part, the Congress general secretary said she has made no such request and that she will be vacating the 35, Lodhi Estate bungalow by August 1 as asked by the government.
Following Priyanka Gandhi’s response, Puri said the leader who called him is at the “very top of the Congress hierarchy”, and the government decided to give Priyanka Gandhi a two-month extension following the request.
On July 1, the government issued an eviction notice to Priyanka Gandhi asking her to vacate the bungalow before August 1 as she was no longer eligible for it after her security cover was downgraded last year.
“Facts speak for themselves! A powerful Congress leader with much clout in the Party called me on 4 July 2020 at 12:05 pm to request that 35, Lodhi Estate be allotted to another INC MP so that Priyanka Vadra can stay on. Let’s not sensationalise everything please,” Puri said on Twitter.
Puri’s tweet came after Priyanka Gandhi called as “fake news” a media report which said she had sought more time to vacate the bungalow.
“This is FAKE NEWS. I have not made any such request to the government. As per the eviction letter handed to me on the 1st of July, I will be vacating the government accommodation at 35 Lodhi Estate by the 1st of August,” she said in a tweet.
Following the union urban development minister’s comments, Priyanka Gandhi reiterated that she will be vacating the bungalow by August 1 and that she has not made any request for extension of her stay in it.
“If someone called you Mr Puri, I thank them for their concern, and thank you for your consideration as well but it still does not change the facts: I have made no such request, and I am making no such request,” she tweeted.
“As I said, I will be vacating the house by the 1st of August as required in the eviction letter,” she said.
Responding to her reply, Puri tweeted: “The leader who called me, & many others, is at the very top of the Congress hierarchy…The same political advisor who speaks and acts on your family’s behalf. It was when he requested that we decided to give a two month extension in good faith.”
“Would only request you to first sort out these issues within your own party before venting in public. Streak of entitlement & playing victim don’t go well together,” he added.
Priyanka Gandhi’s security cover was downgraded from elite SPG (Special Protection Group) cover to Z plus security by the CRPF (Central Reserve Police Force). She was eligible for government accommodation when she had security cover by the SPG.
Congress Spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala too commented on the issue following Puri’s tweet, saying Priyanka Gandhi “fights for the cause of people and needs no favours from your ilk. So stop bragging unwarrantedly. The issue is closed”. (PTI)