CHANDIGARH: The Punjab Cabinet today approved a proposal to make it mandatory for all the 117 MLAs of the state to declare their immovable properties in January of every calendar year.
The cabinet approved the necessary amendment to Section 3-AAA in 'The Punjab Legislative Assembly (Salaries and Allowances of Members) Act, 1942' for this purpose, in line with the desire of the Speaker, Punjab Vidhan Sabha Rana KP Singh.
This proposal would now be sent to Legal Remembrancer (LR) to prepare the draft of the Bill, which the Cabinet has authorized the Chief Minister to approve.
It may be recalled that the state council of ministers had on March 18, 2017 decided that all MLAs and MPs shall be required to declare their immovable properties as on January 1 every year. The cabinet had also decided that for the year 2017-18, this should be done by July 1, 2017.
Interestingly this year by January 1, only 15 out of 117 legislators have declared their property returns to the Punjab Assembly. Among them who have submitted, eight MLAs belonged to AAP (they have a total of 20 MLAs). Punjab assembly speaker Rana KP Singh and deputy speaker Ajaib Singh Bhatti, former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son former deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal were the first to submit their returns.
Out of 78 Congress MLAs only five and out of 14 SAD legislators, only two have submitted their returns by January 1, this year, said sources.