The Legacy Of Humility: Vajpayee’s Adopted Family Gives Up Lutyens’ Bungalow, Wants SPG Security Cover To Be Revoked

The Legacy Of Humility: Vajpayee’s Adopted Family Gives Up Lutyens’ Bungalow, Wants SPG Security Cover To Be RevokedNamita Bhattacharya and Niharika Bhattacharya during Vajpayee’s last rites.

Namita Bhattacharya, the foster daughter of late prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, has written to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO), expressing her family’s wish to vacate the Krishna Memon Marg bungalow allotted to Vajpayee. Citing the intrusive nature of security arrangements and inconvenience caused to the public, she also asked for withdrawal of Special Protection Group (SPC) cover given to them, as per a TOI report.

Namita, her husband Ranjan Bhattacharya and their daughter Niharika, had lived with Vajpayee during his prime ministerial term, as well as afterwards, at 6-A, Krishna Menon Marg, even as his health deteriorated over the years. Vajpayee’s adopted family is now desirous of moving out of their Lutyens’ Delhi home and shift to a private residence.

Vajpayee had adopted Namita as she was the daughter of his long-time college friend and associate, Rajrani Kaul. Ranjan Bhattacharya had also worked with Vajpayee as Officer on Special Duty (OSD) to PM during his term.

The family had also been given protection under the SPG Act, which provides for security cover to be retained by the immediate family members of a former prime minister for 12 months or longer, depending on the threat assessment. The law was amended to include its current provisions to cover the immediate family of former prime ministers following the assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, to provide protection to Rahul, Sonia and Priyanka Gandhi.