BJP, Congress slam four-fold hike of Delhi MLAs

New Delhi, Oct 7 (IANS) A day after an independent panel of experts suggested raising the basic monthly salary of Delhi’s legislators from Rs.12,000 to Rs.50,000, the opposition BJP and Congress slammed the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

On Tuesday, an independent committee of experts set up to look into revision of salaries and allowances of Delhi legislators recommended a hefty hike from the current Rs.88,000 to Rs.2.10 lakh per month, including various allowances.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday questioned the style of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government.

“They want their salaries to be hiked from Rs.88,000 to Rs.2,10,000. They want posh residences. Is this the Aam Aadmi Party government,” asked BJP Delhi unit chief Satish Upadhyay.

Youth Congress workers staged a protest outside Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s residence over the recommended hike in the salaries of legislators.

The protestors, carrying banners and placards with messages such as ‘Aam aadmi hua khaas, janata ka uth gaya inse vishwas’ (Common man has become special, he has lost public faith), raised slogans against the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government.

The three-member panel, however, defended the proposed hike, saying the elected representatives should be concerned about public welfare and not bothered about how to make their ends meet.

The panel also said the “widely publicised” perception that they would become the highest paid legislators – if recommendations accepted – was “misleading and misplaced”.

“It is a positive step in the sense that the salary and allowances of elected representatives are being debated threadbare, which the committee considers a healthy sign for the country’s democracy,” said Prasanna Kumar Suryadevara, Member-Secretary of the Committee in a statement.

“The Committee is of the firm belief that the elected representatives should concentrate on public welfare and should not be bothered with how to make their ends meet,” it added.

It pointed that a lawmaker in Goa gets Rs.90,000 as constituency allowance, its recommendation for Delhi legislators was Rs.50,000.

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