NEW DELHI: An expert committee, set up by the Arvind Kejriwal government, on Tuesday has recommended an increase of over 400 percent in the basic salary -- from Rs 12,000 to Rs 50,000 per month -- and 300 percent in the other allowances for Delhi legislators.
According to recommendations, if accepted, the MLAs salary and other allowances will increase from the existing Rs 88,000 per month to Rs 2.10 lakh per month. The expert committee’s recommendation is also alarming in nature in the sense that the salary and allowances of MLAs will be highest in the country. Overall, the hike recommended has been over 250 percent.
A high-level committee of experts headed by former Secretary General Lok Sabha PDT Achary has submitted its recommendations to Delhi Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel on Tuesday. In July, a group of AAP MLAs had demanded a significant hike in salary, arguing their earnings were not enough to run their family and offices.
It is noted that UP’s MLA gets salary of Rs 61,000 per month that include basic salary and other allowances; Bihar MLA gets salary of Rs 81,000 per month; Andhra Pradesh, Telangna and Himachal Pradesh’s MLA get monthly salary of Rs 1.25 lakh and Goa MLA gets Rs 1.14 lakh per month.
The last revision of MLAs salary was made in September 2011, that was 100 percent by the then Sheila Dikshit government, citing inflation and the rise in the cost of living cost.
As per recommendations, apart from basic salary, the committee has recommended hiking constituency allowance from current Rs 18,000 to Rs 50,000, saying the current amount was "grossly" inadequate. A reimbursable sum of Rs 70,000 per month has also been recommended as allowance under 'Secretarial, Research and Office Assistance' head which is Rs 30,000 at present.
An 'office rental and related utilities' allowance of Rs 25,000 has been recommended for meeting expenditure on office space and other essential amenities provided by government agencies. The committee has also suggested a communication allowance of Rs 10,000 per month as well as Rs 30,000 as monthly conveyance allowance for each MLA.
The ‘Daily’ allowance of each MLA during every sitting of the House or its committees has been recommended to be hiked from Rs 1,000 to Rs 2,000.
The one-time allowances of MLAs have also been recommended to be increased significantly with one time ‘office furnishing’ allowance of Rs 1 lakh, Rs 60,000 for purchasing office equipment and a vehicle loan of Rs 12 lakh, which is Rs 4 lakh at present.
The panel has also recommended a hike in monthly pension from the existing Rs 7,500 to Rs 15,000 per month for first term of membership and an additional pension of Rs 1,000 per month for every successive year of membership beyond the first term. The family pension has been recommended at 50 percent of the pension being paid to a deceased member or an ex-member.
The committee’s recommendations also include a maximum reimbursable travel allowance of Rs 3 lakh per annum for each MLA and his dependents by air, rail, road or steamer.
In an important recommendation, it also favoured a 10 per cent raise in the basic salary, Rs 5,000 per month, after every 12 months, from the date on which new salary and allowances come into force.