Pratibha Patil’s Pune Bungalow: Denying the undeniable

While the Moneylife report on the construction of a post-retirement bungalow for Pratibha Patil in Pune became viral in social media, the President's office came up with a denial which did not address the core issues, but was carried faithfully by the mainstream media

When the Moneylife report on the construction of a post-retirement bungalow for president Pratibha Patil in Pune President Pratibha Patil grabs 2,61,000 sq ft of land meant for soldiers and officers hit the internet running, it became viral in the social media, attracting even more damaging information on the activities of the president and her immediate family in Maharashtra. The mainstream media was slow to react, despite constantly being needled in the social media for ignoring what was public knowledge in Maharashtra. Eventually the president's office came up with a denial which did not address the core issues, but was carried faithfully by the mainstream media. Meanwhile, out there in Pune, the truth is out there to be seen. Can anybody stop the truth from coming out in this day and age of internet? With this report we have pictures of the president’s bungalow under construction.

It doesn’t get higher than the president, in India, and in what appears to be an unwritten law with the mainstream media in Delhi, you don't persist in saying or writing anything about the office and the persons therein which can even remotely be considered to be demoralising or dishonouring. This could be in exchange for the typical quid-pro-quo arrangements that exist in Delhi with such things or born out of traditions going back to a day when feudal and colonial practices were justified. But times have changed.

And nobody brought this out better than Vinita Deshmukh of Pune, a regular columnist for Moneylife, winner of the Chameli Devi Award for journalism and fearless to her own truths to a point where the typical pressures that emanate in and from Delhi, didn’t really impact what is rapidly becoming a report with no previous parallel.

In a situation where corruption in high places is becoming the major issue in India, it is expected that the president and her office take extra special care to stay clear of even the least taint or suspicion. On that count there is still no cogent explanation or response.

Based on more inputs, it remains to be seen whether these questions will be answered or not, either through the RTI route or directly, and much of how the people of this country hold the high office of the president will be decided by that. That is the point that Ms Deshmukh’s report brings out in a straightforward article based on facts which only Moneylife had the guts to carry.

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9 years ago
I am ashamed to read opiniop of many for the President of India who is due to retire. Especially language used is most upsetting.

Withdrawal from the allotment made under some pretext is unassuming as it is by the Highest Authority of India. She has broken records of all earlier Presidents.

Is President for our protection or procurement?
v s sukumar
9 years ago
Congratulations to all the RTI crusaders, particularly Col.Patil who had the grit to withstand the pressure from all forms who have done a great service not only to the Defense Estates but also to the country by exposing the betrayal of the Oath by the highest dignitary of the country.
10 years ago
It is quite obvious that this President,who was furnished under unscrupulous means,whood winking the standard guy,is very little great in order to individual go above others. Except for sure,with regards to happenst become a grabbinng anything and everything over others. You should be justifiable ashamed,but MERA BHARAT MAHAN.
10 years ago
Apparently the lady now wants 85 lakhs for interior decoration work for the palace being built in Pune . . .

""In a huge snub to the head of the state President Pratibha Patil, the Home Ministry has turned down her demand for Rs 85 lakhs to do up her new controversy ridden retirement home in Pune.

Union Home Minister, P Chidambaram has reluctantly sanctioned Rs 20 lakhs which is still a record sum in the history of the republic.

Former presidents such as APJ Kalam were given Rs 6 and a half lakhs and earlier presidents such as KR Narayan and Shankar Dayal Sharma sought and got only Rs four and a half lakhs and one and a half lakhs.

This was cited by the Home Ministry to turn down Pratibha Patil's demand.""
Replied to malq comment 10 years ago
besharmi ki hadd kya hoti ho sakti hai ,,koi inse seekhe.. a new record set by none other then President.
10 years ago
Can somebody tell me the president's qualification.Reports tell of her being of great HELP to Sonia ji.
Long live Indian sycophants and corrupt politicians.
10 years ago
And here are details of what the President of India, Mrs. Pratibha Patil, already owns (as per her own declaration).

""The President has a house in Amravati district of Maharashtra worth Rs 39.60 lakh and a 3.82 hectares farm house worth Rs 9.82 lakh. She has inherited 3.57 hectares agricultural land worth Rs 7.81 lakh from her father in Jalgaon and another land worth Rs 20 lakh in Dhule district. Patil had purchased two agricultural plots of 1.19 hectares and 1.49 hectares in Jalgaon district in 1997-98 worth Rs 3.64 lakh and Rs 2.90 lakh respectively.""
Lt Col Sreedhar GV
10 years ago
This is the price being paid by the Congress party for a rubber stamp President. It looks this President of India is shameless and has no conscience at all. If she has to grab land at all, why Military land? There are so many corrupt Congress Men in Maharastra who should have affered any land else where. Not only she is going to live there, it is her worthless inheritors who will enjoy the property after her& for ever! Is there any way of stopping this attrocity on Soldiers/Sailors/Airmen carried out by the highest authority in the country. Why not Anna Hazare's team or some other Maharastra(Pune) enthusiasts take up this issue quickly? At least obtain a stay order from a local Court on the construction work? I think it is very urgent. Many many thanks to Vinita Deshmukh of Pune.
10 years ago
Main stream media is controlled by Greed and Fear. Greed for govt Awards, Ads, Positions and Fear of CBI, IncomeTax and Defamation Law suite (Times Now ) They no longer have freedom of thought or courage.
Moneylife has been doing good job in keeping investors informed now it is challenging even bigger media houses.

Btw : Is tehelka still being published?
10 years ago
Ms. Pratiba Patil has now done sufficient damage by going to 23 nations together with her extended clan. Sonia (not Gandhi) selecting to just supplying second phase to Ms. Pratiba furthermore. Since Ms. Pratiba already viewed most the nations, she would like in order to consider remainder documented in palatial bungalow in Pune
10 years ago
she is a disgusting person who made millions from fraud in cooerative banks and whose son was caught with 1 crore in his car and now she is grabbing land meant for army jawans. How can she be ihead of our nation and why BJP/congress allow it to happen and what is sonia gandhi doing as she is one who forced her on us.
10 years ago
It is very evident that the President,who was appointed under unscrupulous means,whood winking the common man,is no great person to rise above others.
Except of course,when it happenst to be grabbinng anything and everything over others.
We should be justifiable ashamed,but MERA BHARAT MAHAN.
10 years ago

Here's Vinita Deshmukh on CNN IBN, where it appears as though the present President is sparring about the amount of land used by others!!
10 years ago
The congress will unleash its dogs and ED, IT, Econ Offence Wing, CBI, at the slightest whiff of wrongdoings by detractors like Kejriwal, Bei, Bhusans, Ramdev. But no action for even serious crimes will be taken against its own rubber stamp members
Replied to deepak comment 10 years ago
Dear deepak, thank you for writing in, and have faith. Good will prevail over evil.

Please help by taking this cause far and wide, spread this article in regional languages if you can, and make sure that people get to know what is happening.

Thanks. And please wait for more revelations.

ramarao chillariga
10 years ago
How come the Supreme commander kept quiet when the question of ONE RANK PAY came up and very many went to the extent of surrendering their medals?Now she has no qualms in occupying their land!!C.RAMA RAO.
Replied to ramarao chillariga comment 10 years ago
Good question, Ramarao ji, and one that deserves to be asked across.

Please do ask the Office of the President's Sectt. And spread the word too. In regional languages, please, if possible.

10 years ago
The article seems to be a complete bogey. The author needs to apologise for misleading the Money Life readers. The Rashtrapati Bhavan clarification says that no land/property has been transferred ownership to the President. She is only being given a place to stay, as all presidents have been given. The place is stated to be a place earlier alloted as official residence of just a Lt. Col. This looks a very resonable situation. How can anyone object to this and blow this out of all proportion.

Roy Scaria has given information on an even more valuable allotment for ex- Pres. Abdul Kalam. Even this is not a transfer of ownership. So even this is OK. Presidents must be treated with respect atleast with an accomodation other people in service have used, for stay during their lifetime.
Replied to Mathai comment 10 years ago
another intersting piece for u , Ms Mathai
Replied to Mathai comment 10 years ago
Dear Mathai, thank you for writing in.

The statement from the President's Sectt. neglects to clarify various aspects, eg:-

# total space utilised and under what sort of procedures.
# total covered area all inclusive.
# who bears cost of fresh new building
# who all stay in the accomodation planned.

Occupancy and possession are what it is about in MH, please bear in mind, and take it from there.

Author and publication stand by what they have written. Just because somebody in the past may or may not have committed a wrong does not mean it becomes OK for the future.

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