MUMBAI: Former legislatures of Maharashtra, who get Rs 50,000 per month as pension, have demanded a pay hike. The former MLAs under the leadership of Congress leader Sudhakar Gangane met Speaker of the state Assembly Haribhau Bagde, Legislative Council Chairman Ramraje Nimbalkar and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on the last day of the budget session to raise the demand.
It may be recalled that the state cabinet had rejected a proposal to hike the pension of former legislators on the ground of stressed financial situation.
The proposal, if accepted, would have put burden of over Rs 7 crore per year on the state exchequer, the government had said back then while rejecting the proposal.
However, about a year before that the legislatures had increased their own salaries by a hefty 166 per cent in August 2016 and doubled their own travel allowances to Rs 2000 per day last year during the winter session.
The pay hike had doubled the salaries of existing MLAs from Rs 75,000 to Rs 1,50,000. Since then the former MLAs too had been demanding a pay hike.
During yesterday’s meeting, the former MLAs demanded that the government should hike their pay in line with the seventh pay commission recommendations for the government employees, which in simpler terms mean doubling the pay package.
But, that is not all, the former MLAs have also demanded some rooms to be kept reserved for them in the MLA hostels across the state, demanded increase in free Railway travel limit to 50,000 km per year from the current 35,000 km and a status of a special executive magistrate.
The state has 695 ex MLAs and 139 ex MLCs.
Before 2016, the salaries of MLAs were increased in 2010 when the salary of legislators was raised from Rs 44,000 to Rs 75,000 per month and also raised the allowances including permissible railway travel from 30,000 km to 50,000 km.