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Trinamool minister asked to pay bill, vacate five-star hotel

Source: PTI
December 02, 2009 00:39 IST
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Union minister and Trinamool Congress leader Sultan Ahmed was on Monday asked by his party to leave his accommodation in the five-star Ashoka Hotel, where he has been staying for the last six months, running up an estimated bill of Rs 36 crore.

Ahmed, minister of state for tourism, has also been asked by party chief Mamata Bannerjee to foot the bill, a close aide of the Union Railway Minister said on Monday night.

According to the aide, Ahmed has been asked to vacate the hotel immediately and make the payment. It is learnt that the bill for staying in Ashoka Hotel for six months amounts to Rs 36 crore.

Though Ahmed, a first-time Member of Parliament, was allotted a ministerial bungalow, he could not move in as the Central Public Works Department could not ready it, the aide said.

When contacted, Ahmed told PTI that before becoming a minister he had stayed in a room at Indian Tourism Development Corporation-owned Samrat Hotel in New Delhi for about a month, and after becoming a minister he moved into the Ashoka Hotel and occupied two rooms.

He said the party has asked him to pay from his pocket the difference between the room rent at Samrat Hotel and that in Ashoka Hotel. Ahmed said he was yet to receive the hotel bill.

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