Withdraw construction permission to Priyanka Vadra: Shimla MLA

Shimla : BJP legislator Suresh Bhardwaj on Friday sought the withdrawal of permission granted to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi’s daughter Priyanka Vadra to construct a cottage in the vicinity of The Retreat here, claiming a “security threat”.

The Retreat building in Mashobra is the summer holiday resort of India’s President where other dignitaries too stay during their Shimla visit.

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The Kalyani helipad near The Retreat, just 15 km uphill from Shimla, is used by the Indian Air Force to ferry these VVIPs and for security sorties.

For security reasons, no construction is allowed in the vicinity of either The Retreat or the Kalyani helipad, the BJP leader said in a letter to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.

“Now, Priyanka Vadra is constructing a house in the area, which has put the security of the President, the Prime Minister and other dignitaries at stake,” he said in the letter.

A two-storey five-room cottage, constructed earlier, was pulled down four years ago as Priyanka Vadra wanted the house to gel with the surroundings.

Bhardwaj said permission to construct houses in The Retreat’s vicinity was denied to various people owing to security reasons.

“However, taking advantage of her family status, Priyanka Vadra managed to get permission in the high-security zone,” he said.

Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Vadra visited Shimla from June 13-15 to see the under-construction cottage that is likely to be completed this year.