The ministers of the PDP- BJP coalition are yet to vacate their official bungalows despite governor’s rule imposed in the state of Jammu and Kashmir since the past one month. Though these former ministers were entitled to reside in these official bungalows for a month and were supposed to vacate them within that period but not even a single one except that of the chief minister’s residence at Jammu was vacated by his family earlier. The Directorate of Estates here has revealed that the former ministers of the BJP-PDP coalition were bound to vacate the official bungalows till February 7 but two days have exceeded and there is no progress. According to the officials in the Estates Department, Ministers are required to vacate the official accommodation within a month of appointment of the new government. “A notice is served to the occupants after completion of one month. The occupant is required to vacate the property within 15 days of the notice being served,” said a senior official. Meanwhile reports informed that the ministers have given cold shoulder to the repeated pleas of the estates department and are apparently in no mood to vacate the government property. Further, it was learnt that a notice to several ministers have already been served but till date the action seems to be a distant dream. Sources said that the ministers continue to use free water, electricity and others doles that used to be offered to them when they were in office “They are doing nothing but still the services out of the public money are being provided to them. There seems to be lot of chaos on ground as the department itself is in a fix over what to do,” an official said. As the governor’s rule was imposed in the state of Jammu and Kashmir after the demise of the chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed on January 7, this year, his family became the first one to vacate CM’s Jammu bungalow on January 28. Mehbooba on 5 February gave a hint that the PDP would break the alliance with the BJP if the Centre did not announce confidence building measures to end the stalemate. It remains to be seen that what action would the Raj Bhavan initiate to vacate the government buildings which are at present in possession of the former ministers. Would the stern action in this regard be in the offing or the state would continue to run with common man bearing the brunt and helmsmen enjoying luxuries.
2015 Kashmir Despatch