10:51 pm - Monday November 9, 2015

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra Asks for Special Privileges at Airports to be Withdrawn

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New Delhi – Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has written a letter to the Special Protection Group or SPG, asking for special airport exemptions provided to her family, when they are travelling together, to be withdrawn.

Priyanka and her husband, Robert Vadra, are currently on a list of VIPs which lets them skip security checks at airports within India.

42-year-old Priyanka, who is the daughter of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, has written to SPG chief Durga Prasad that she and her husband would go through normal channels where they are frisked. The SPG looks after the security of the prime minister, former prime ministers and their families.

“Since the government is now reportedly considering the removal of his (Robert Vadra) name, I would like to inform you that I do not feel it will be correct for my children and me to avail of the facility of exemption of these checks while entering or exiting the airport when we are all traveling together,” her letter says.

Priyanka’s letter states that the exemption to her husband when the both of them travel together was not at their request, and that she had made a similar request for removal of special exemptions earlier as well.

It also says that Mr Vadra goes through full security checks when travelling alone, and it is embarrassing to him to be exempted.

“It has been a source of constant embarrassment for my husband who has asked me on numerous occasions to have it removed as, in any case, he goes through the full security check and procedure from the normal channel every time he is traveling on his own,” she writes.

She has also requested for the security detail to be discreet and unobtrusive. “Request you to ensure that when we are entering or exiting boarding gates there is no disturbance to passengers… Request security detail to behave in a manner that is discreet and strictly unobtrusive,” the letter says.

Yesterday, when asked whether Mr Vadra would continue to be in the VIP list and not be checked at airports, new Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju Pusapati’s had said “Security should be meaningful and not ornamental. It will depend on if the Home Ministry feels there is a threat perception, and I am not talking about Vadra, we’ll have to see.”

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