New Delhi

BJP’s Varun Gandhi has asked the Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to forgo the salaries for rich MLA’s in the remaining term of the present (16th) Lok Sabha. The term of the lower House will end in May next year. He wrote in his lette “A voluntary exercise such as this will send a positive message across the nation regarding the level of sensitivity that we possess as elected representatives.” He went on,  “If relinquishing salaries is too much to ask for, the Speaker could introduce a fresh narrative focussed on an alternative strategy rather than the current practice of arrogating of salaries at will to ourselves.”

“India’s inequality gap is widening further every day… A growing divide is detrimental to our democracy and we as public representatives must be seen to be more responsive to our country’s socio-economic realities.” The government roughly spends Rs 2.7 lakh per MP per month. In the year 2016, Rs 176 crore was spent on the 543 MPs of the Lok Sabha alone.”

Varun also stated that according to the a report of Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR), 32 sitting Lok Sabha MPs (roughly 24%), had assets that were priced at more than 10 crores. And that the average asset of an MLA ranges upto Rs 14.61 crore. He also wrote that it would be better if there was a statutory committee involved in marking the salaries of the MLA’s, and as opposed to themselves deciding how much they want to be paid by the government. He also mentioned the  basic salary of Rs 50,000 per month and Rs 45,000 as constituency allowance for the MLA’s, henche, the government spends too much on them, money that should go to other, more important things.

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