The Public Works Department of the Delhi government has issued notice to AAP’s National Convenor Arvind Kejriwal asking him to immediately vacate the party’s Rouse Avenue office that was allotted in “violation” of rules.
The move comes less than a week after Lt Governor Anil Baijal ordered cancellation of the office allotment to the AAP in the wake of a report by the Shunglu committee which pointed out “irregularities” in allotting the office.
“The PWD has issued the notice to AAP to vacate its office- 206, Rouse Avenue on DDU Marg – immediately. The department has not given any time frame to Aam Aadmi Party as the office allotment was illegal,” a source said.
Asked whether the PWD will charge rent for the office used, the source said, “The matter is under consideration.”
Confirming the development, AAP’s national secretary Pankaj Gupta said the notice has been issued to party’s national convenor Kejriwal.
He said the party will chalk out its next course of action soon.
“We have received the notice issued to AAP’a National Convenor today to vacate the office. This is truly frustrating as AAP is being singled out despite being a state party with an over-whelming majority,” he said.
In its report to the L-G office, the PWD has said the city administration doesn’t have power to allot land to political parties as such powers in the national capital are vested with the Centre.
In November 2015, the AAP government had approved a policy for land allotment to state parties. The Kejriwal government then allotted a bungalow to the AAP on Rouse Avenue the following year.
The bungalow was earlier allotted to Asim Ahmed Khan, the then Delhi minister, who was sacked over graft charges.
“There are other political parties, which have been operating from bungalows for decades now, but no action has been taken against them,” Gupta said.
While moving into the office, the party had also made significant investments on refurbishing it.
In a public meeting, Kejriwal had alleged the party was being targeted for promising abolition of residential house tax. He had said his party is ready to operate from streets as well.