Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s tea invitation to the next occupant of her 35 Lodhi State bungalow has received a negative RSVP. BJP MP Anil Baluni, instead, has invited her and her family to dinner, promising to serve all the traditional dishes of Uttarakhand.
Ms Gandhi Vadra, who was asked to vacate the bungalow earlier this month, had invited the next occupant, Mr Baluni, to tea yesterday. Party sources said it was a “positive gesture”.
The response came today. “I returned home after treatment for cancer. Now, the doctors have asked me to stay at home,” Mr Baluni has written to Ms Gandhi Vadra, sources said. The dinner party, the 49-year-old BJP member of the Rajya Sabha has said, could be held once he moves into the Lutyens bungalow at the heart of Delhi.
Ms Gandhi Vadra was asked to vacate the bungalow — allotted to her in 1997 for security reasons — by August 1. The notice, which gave her a month to shift, said the allotment stands cancelled as she is no longer an SPG (Special Protection Group) protectee.
The move reflected the “deep hatred and vendetta of Prime Minister Narendra Modi” towards the Congress leadership, the Congress said.
The Congress general secretary — who immediately paid her Rs 3.6 lakh dues — had a furious Twitter exchange with Housing mnister Hardeep Puri after he suggested that she had requested more time to vacate her government bungalow.
Ms Gandhi Vadra, who was given charge of rebuilding the party from the grassroots in Uttar Pradesh, was planning to shift base to Lucknow. It was delayed by her daughter’s board exams, and the coronavirus outbreak.
Party sources said the notice to vacate the Lodhi Road bungalow has now accelerated the shift, though she is expected to stay in Gurugram for a while before moving to the Uttar Pradesh capital.