If you think Delhi MLAs are getting highest paid then you are wrong, now legislators from Telangana have surpassed them. The MLAs became the country’s highest-paid state lawmakers on after the assembly approved a bill that hiked their gross monthly salary by 163 pc to Rs 2.5 lakh.
The basic pay for members of the state assembly and council was increased from Rs 12,000 to Rs 20,000 per month. The constituency allowance that comprises other perks, benefits and subsidies was hiked from Rs 83,000 to Rs 2.3 lakh a month.
Legislators in the state that will turn two in June overtook their counterparts in Delhi who draw a gross monthly salary of Rs 2.1 lakh.
The legislators’ gross salary would now go up to Rs 2.30 lakh per month from the present Rs 95,000 per month (including allowances), chief whip Koppula Eswar earlier told PTI.
A pension of Rs 30,000 has also been proposed for ex-legislators.
Legislature Affairs Minister T Harish Rao, who moved the Bill, said the hike is being made as per requests made to the government in last one-and-half year by MLAs and MLCs.
Observing that the hike is necessary for people like him who came from humble back ground, Congress member Sampath Kumar said his party welcomed the bill. BJP member Ch Ramachandra Reddy also sought a hike in the vehicle loan.
Noting that economic dynamics have undergone a sea change over the years, Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao said the legislators have to bear costs for attending a number of meetings of the government, zilla parishad and others and on taking care of number of visitors everyday.
They also have to bear the costs involved in travelling within the constituency, to the district headquarters and also the state capital city, he said.
Referring to the debate in media on salary hike for MLAs and MLCs, Rao also made an appeal to the mediapersons to understand the prevailing situation.
The estimated expenditure of Rs 42 crores does not constitute even the perceptible percentage of the state budget (of more than Rs one lakh crore), he said.