Meet the new Lutyens elite: Housing meant for MPs occupied by RSS-linked outfits

The Vithal Bhai Patel complex has 176 flats. At least 14 are ostensibly illegally occupied.

WrittenBy:Pratyush Deep& Avdhesh Kumar
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Often in the news for former legislators clinging to their once official homes, a housing complex in Lutyens’ Delhi – with flats for MPs and political parties – has a few other unusual occupants this time. 

While eight right-wing outfits and a Kerala-based channel have been using 10 flats at the compound as their workspace, at least four houses have been occupied by families and individuals who are not part of the permitted categories, Newslaundry has found.

Established in 1967, the five-storey Vithal Bhai Patel housing complex is located in Rafi Marg near premier institutes such as the NITI Ayog and Reserve Bank of India, and is owned by the directorate of estate under the union ministry of urban development. It has 176 flats, of which four are allotted to the Institute of Parliamentary Studies and the rest to current and former MPs and political parties. But violations of norms have frequently grabbed headlines – most recently when Rajyavardhan Singh Parmar, a Hindutva leader accused of sexual assault, was found living at a flat alloted in an MP’s name with his family for two years.

Parmar, however, doesn’t seem to be the only one.

At least 14 of these flats have been illegally occupied by repeated extensions of “guest” status – the guest accommodation at VP House is aimed at short-term stays – through an opaque process, Newslaundry has found.

The allotment here is under three categories, including the Rajya Sabha pool with 30 flats, the Lok Sabha pool with 76 flats, and the general pool with 68 flats. While the allocation under the first two categories is carried out by the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha Secretariats, respectively, the directorate of estate does it for the general category and the Central Public Works Department oversees maintenance at the complex. 

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