H.D. Kumaraswamy, the newly appointed chief minister of Karnataka has decided not to use the vehicle given to him by the state as his official car. Instead, he will use a Land Rover Range Rover Vogue to move around. Even though the luxury SUV is his own and is not bought from tax payers’ money, the move has attracted a lot of criticism.
What is happening here?
Kumaraswamy’s predecessor Siddaramaiah used a Toyota Fortuner SUV, which was provided to him by the state as the official car, during his tenure. The cost of the Toyota Fortuner is less than a third of the cost of the Range Rover Vogue that carries a starting price tag of Rs. 1.75 crores, without any road tax or registration. Kumaraswamy owns the version, which is powered by a 4.4-litre V8 diesel engine, which is not available in the base variant of the model.
There are reports that also suggest that the car comes with a modified suspension system and seats that make it more comfortable. Interestingly, the stock Range Rover comes with an Air Suspension system that is said to be one of the most comfortable suspension systems. We are not sure what modification has been done to the vehicle to make it more comfortable.
The modified Range Rover is far more comfortable than the Toyota Fortuner, which has a bumpy ride quality. However, there are many who prefer the Fortuner over any other SUV in the segment, making it the largest selling car in the price bracket.
It is his own vehicle!
H.D. Kumaraswamy has gone through two heart surgeries and he has been using the very same Range Rover Vogue for more than five years now. His office has made a small contribution by using his own vehicle instead of taking the vehicle from the government. As he has undergone two heart surgeries, his doctors have advised him not to strain his body. Also, his family have advised the CM to stick to his own car as they believe that it is lucky for him.
The Chief Minister has not taken a government residence too and will work from his current home. As per law, he is allowed to use his private vehicle as an official car but because of its price tag, a lot of criticism has come from the opposition. The black SUV is registered in the name of Kasthuri Medias Pvt Ltd. Before politics, he was into film production and distribution where he made his fortune.