NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) challenging the perks, including pension and travel allowances, given to former Parliamentarians.
A bench of justices J Chelameswar and Sanjay Kishan Kaul was delivering judgment in an appeal filed by NGO ‘Lok Prahari’ against the Allahabad High Court order dismissing its plea alleging that pension and other perks being given to MPs even after demitting office are contrary to Article 14 (Right to Equality) of the Constitution.
The bench said: “Each constitutional office holder functions in accordance with the powers and duties entrusted to it either by constitution or the laws relevant to their power and duties,” the bench added.
“Safeguards, therefore, were provided in respect of the various aspects of the tenure and other conditions of service relevant for their offices. When it comes to MPs, however, such a higher degree of constitutional protection is not obviously required as the authority to make laws rests only with them,” the judgement states while dismissing the plea.
The Centre had on March 7 told the apex court that the entitlement of former Members of Parliament (MPs) to get pension and other benefits was "justified" as their dignity has to be maintained even after they complete their tenure as parliamentarians.
Centre had said the bench about the Finance Bill 2018 which contains provisions regarding salary and pension of MPs and also about revision of their allowances after every five years starting from April 1, 2023, on the basis of cost inflation index.