Ex-UP chief ministers, including Rajnath Singh, Mulayam Singh Yadav and Mayawati, will have to vacate their palatial Lucknow bungalows in two months with the Supreme Court today quashing the state rules giving "largesse" only to former CMs without any "element of reasonableness".
The verdict may have an impact in other states where former chief ministers are occupying government bungalows for life under the local laws.
"It is held that the 1997 Rules (Ex-Chief Ministers Residence Allotment Rules, 1997) so far as they are not in consonance with the provisions of the 1981 Uttar Pradesh Ministers (Salaries, Allowances and Miscellaneous Provisions Act), are bad in law.
"The government bungalows allotted to the respondents is held to be bad in law and the concerned respondents shall hand over possession of the bungalows occupied by them within two months from today and the respondent government shall also recover appropriate rent from the occupants of the said bungalows for the period during which they were in unauthorised occupation of the said bungalows," a three-judge bench headed by Justice A R Dave said.
The bench also comprising N V Ramana and R Banumathi, said, "In fact, the impugned 1997 Rules give largesse only to former chief ministers without any element of reasonableness."
Dealing with the legality of the impugned provisions, it said, "...In our opinion, the 1997 Rules, which permit the former chief ministers to occupy government bungalows for life cannot be said to be valid.
"In the circumstances, respondent no.1 (State of Uttar Pradesh) cannot permit any former chief minister to occupy any government bungalow or any government accommodation after 15 days from the date on which his term comes to an end," it said.
The judgement came on a plea filed by a UP-based NGO Lok Prahari, which had sought a direction against allotment of government bungalows to ex-CMs and other "non-eligible" organisations under the state rules.