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Three-fold hike in legislators’ salaries; Bill approved unanimously

TA

Hyderabad: Telangana State Assembly here on Tuesday unanimously passed a Bill to effect a handsome hike in the salaries of the legislators, including chief minister and presiding officers of both the houses of the legislature.

Earlier, Minister for Legislative Affairs T Harish Rao introduced the Telangana Payment of Salaries and Pensions and Removal of Disqualifications (Amendment) Bill-2016 as per a recommendation of the Committee on Amenities of the Telangana Legislature which met on March 21. It was estimated that the hike would cost the exchequer of Rs. 42.67 crore per annum. With the unanimous passage of the bill the salaries of the legislators would increase three-fold.

Moving the Bill, Harish Rao said the hike was being made as per the requests made to the government in the last one-and-a-half years by the legislators of majority of parties. Observing that the hike was necessary for people like him, who came from humble background, Congress member Sampath Kumar said his party welcomed the bill in toto. BJP member Chintala Ramachandra Reddy sought a hike in the vehicle loan as well as a hike in the allowances.

Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao said the economic dynamics have undergone a sea-change over the years. He noted that the legislators have to attend a number of meetings of the government, zilla parishad and others, besides taking care of a number of visitors everyday. They also have to bear the costs involved in travelling within the constituency, to the district head quarters and also the State capital city, he said. He also made an appeal to the media to understand the prevailing situation as the estimated expenditure of Rs 42 crore does not constitute even the perceptible percentage of the State budget, he said.

Responding to suggestions made by several members to hike the pension of the former legislators, the Chief Minister said the issue will be discussed in the next session and take a favorable decision. He also assured the members that amendments if any could be made in the next session.

As per the Legislators Salaries Bill, the MLAs and MLCs would get monthly salary of Rs 2.5 lakh including basic pay of Rs 20,000 and Constituency Allowance of Rs 2.3 lakh as against the existing salary of Rs 95,000.

Ministers, chief whip and whips would get Rs 4 lakh, including basic pay Rs 30,000, constituency allowance Rs 2.3 lakh, special allowance Rs 8,000, personal allowance R 7,000, camp office allowance Rs 10,000, security car allowance Rs 25,000, own vehicle allowance Rs 30,000, fuel allowance Rs 10,000 and house rent allowance Rs 50,000. Hitherto, they were drawing a salary of Rs 2.42 lakh.

The chief minister would get a total salary of Rs 4.21 lakh, including basic pay Rs 51,000, constituency allowance Rs 2.3 lakh, special allowance Rs 8,000, personal allowance Rs 7,000, camp office allowance Rs 10,000, security car allowance Rs 25,000, own vehicle allowance Rs 30,000, fuel allowance Rs 10,000, house rent allowance Rs 50,000. The existing salary of the chief minister was Rs 2.44 lakh every month.

Similarly, Assembly speaker and Council chairman would get Rs 4.11 lakh every month as against the present salary of Rs 2.42 lakh. (NSS)

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