From a rent-free bungalow to having Sonia Gandhi as his neighbour...The new life of Ram Nath Kovind!

After ending his five-year imperial tenure at the towering Rashtrapati Bhavan as India's 14th President and as the country's first citizen, Ram Nath Kovind is all into his new life in Delhi that will confer him with more perks and benefits as the former President. On Monday- July 25, Droupadi Murmu has become India's 15th President after Kovind demitted his office on Sunday. 

After the transition and ceremonial farewell, Ram Nath Kovind left the Rashtrapati Bhavan along with his family and under the constitutional guarantee, Kovind will now lead a life with various benefits including a retirement pension and a rent-free bungalow. Ram Nath Kovind has moved into a fully furnished bungalow in Lutyens' Delhi, which will be his home for the rest of his life.

The outgoing President will be entitled to a monthly pension of Rs 2.5 lakh, which is 50% of the presidential salary of Rs 5 lakh. Kovind has been allotted a bungalow in 12-Janpath, which was occupied by Ram Vilas Paswan till his death and later, it was occupied by his son Chirag Paswan, who vacated the bungalow in March this year. As Sonia Gandhi lives in the 10-Janpath bungalow, former President Ram Nath Kovind will now have the Congress Chief as his neighbour.  

According to the President's Emoluments and Pension Act, 1951, a retired President is entitled to a rent-free furnished bungalow, two telephones (one for internet and broadband connectivity), and one mobile phone with a national roaming facility, and a car or allowance to avail a car. The retired President can avail of free medical treatment and the highest class travel anywhere in India, accompanied by one person, by air or rail.

As per the Act, he or she is also entitled to secretarial staff comprising a private secretary, an additional private secretary, a personal assistant and two peons, and office expenses up to Rs 1 lakh per annum. The Act further says that the spouse of the President is entitled to get a family pension at the rate of 50% of what a retiring president gets, for the rest of his/her life, in case the president dies in office or resigns or demits office after the end of the term. 

The spouse is also entitled to the use of a furnished residence without the payment of licence fees. As per the Act, the spouse can also avail of secretarial staff - a private secretary and a peon, and office expenses up to Rs 20,000 per annum. Akin to the retired President, the spouse can also have a free telephone, and a car and he/she is entitled to have 12 top-class single journeys anywhere in the country.