New Delhi, Jan 4 (IANS) Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Saturday refused to move into a five-bedroom government flat here following criticism and demanded a smaller house instead for his family.
“I won’t shift to the five-bedroom duplex flat,” Kejriwal told the media before the start of the Aam Aadmi Party’s national executive meeting, and explained why.
“I have received lots of messages and phone calls from people and some close relatives suggesting that I should not accept such a big accommodation,” he said.
Kejriwal, who lives in Kaushambi in Uttar Pradesh near Delhi, has been allotted two adjoining five-bedroom duplex flats in the heart of Delhi. He had said Friday that he would use one of them as his office.
His decision sparked off widespread criticism that the AAP leader, who has always advocated simple living, was moving into a cosy house.
Kejriwal initially defended the duplex flat, saying he presently lived in a four-bedroom house and that this wasn’t really luxury for him.
But he said in a tweet later Saturday: “Many ordinary supporters were hurt by (the) houses identified for me by the Delhi government.
“As I have always said, I am (an ordinary person). But friends, I would need to have two adjacent houses, one of them as an office. Else I will become ineffective.”
Kejriwal said that until a smaller accommodation was provided to him, he would continue to work from his office-cum-residence in Kaushambi.
The AAP founder leader, however, justified the use of government vehicles by ministers.
“Friends, (the) controversy around government transport used by ministers is not right.
“Ministers have to use government transport for their work… We never ever said that we won’t use government transport.
“We said we won’t use lal battis (red beacon). And we stand by that. Lot of people have worked very hard and selflessly for this political revolution. I will try my best not to let their sacrifice go in vain,” he added.