President to forgo her post-retirement defence accommodation

President Pratibha Devisingh Patil has finally agreed to forego the palatial post-retirement accommodation on a 5-acre defence land in Pune in the wake of media revelations.

According to a government statement issued today, the press and the electronic media have been making fallacious observations regarding the accommodation in Pune, which she was to occupy after relinquishing office of the President.

''She chose not to react as she has always held herself answerable to the Constitution of our country and her conscience. It was expected that once the facts were made public it would convince the concerned people. But despite clarifications given by the President's Secretariat, it is unfortunate that the misgivings continue to persist,'' the release said.

''What has pained the President the most is the fact that she is now being portrayed by some people as one who, by agreeing to accept a defence accommodation for her post retirement home, is insensitive to the cause of war widows and ex-servicemen,'' the release noted.

According to the release, the accommodation proposed to be allocated to the President by the ministry of defence was never indicated as one earmarked for war widows. It was to be allotted to her for use as her post retirement residence only during her lifetime with no rights of ownership, transfer lease, etc.

However, considering the fact that the issue has got linked with the issue of war widows accommodation by some people, the President has chosen to forego the aforesaid allotment of accommodation proposed to be made to her as her post retirement home in Pune, the release said.