Despite the Delhi Assembly passing a bill to hike the salaries and allowances of MLAs by over 66 per cent, the lawmakers of the national capital will continue to draw lower salaries than their counterparts of Telangana and Himachal Pradesh, and might still be among the lowest paid in the country.
The monthly salary of an MLA in Delhi was Rs 12,000 but after the bill, which will go for President's approval, it will be Rs 30,000 and along with allowances, it will go up to Rs 90,000 from Rs 54,000. Five different bills were tabled for the hike in salaries of ministers, MLAs, chief whip, Speaker and Deputy Speaker, and Leader of Opposition in the Assembly, which were passed by the members. These bills will now be sent for president's approval.
According to official figures, an MLA currently draws a monthly salary of Rs 12,000 which will go up to Rs 30,000 after the bills get approved by the President. The constituency allowance will go up to Rs 25,000 from Rs 18,000, while the conveyance allowance will be hiked to Rs 10,000 from Rs 6,000.
The telephone allowance will see a hike of Rs 2,000 from Rs 8,000 to Rs 10,000, while the secretarial allowance will increase from Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,000.
The figures by PRS Legislative, a non-profit organisation, state that Himachal Pradesh MLAs draw a salary of Rs 55,000 while the constituency allowance, daily allowance, secretarial allowance, telephone allowance stand at Rs 90,000, Rs 1,800, Rs 30,000, Rs 15,000, respectively.
The salary of Kerala MLAs is lower than Delhi MLAs and is a meagre Rs 2,000 while they do not have a secretarial allowance whereas the constituency allowance stands at Rs 25,000, according to PRS.
The salaries of Telangana MLAs is Rs 20,000 but the constituency allowance stands at Rs 2.3 lakh whereas there are allowances also on accommodation if it is not provided by the government.
The respective salaries of MLAs in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Chhatisgarh, Mizoram and West Bengal stand at Rs 12,000, Rs 30,000, Rs 20,000, Rs 25,000, Rs 80,000 and Rs 10,000.
The constituency allowance of Andhra Pradesh MLAs stand at Rs 1.13 lakh while the figures for Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Chhatisgarh, Punjab, Mizoram and West Bengal stand at Rs 25,000, Rs 1.5 lakh, Rs 30,000, Rs 25,000, Rs 40,000 and Rs 4,000, respectively.
Chhatisgarh lawmakers get allowances like orderly allowance to the tune of Rs 15,000, medical allowance of Rs 10,000.
Thus, the cumulative salaries of Uttarakhand MLAs is over Rs 1.82 lakh while those of the AAP ruled Punjab is near Rs 95,000. The Mizoram MLAs draw close to Rs 1.50 lakh.
Delhi MLAs have raised the issue of low salary several times in the past with Vishesh Ravi even saying in 2018 that unmarried MLAs find it difficult to find brides. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said that their is an honest government and their MLAs do not indulge in corruption.
Salaries and allowances of Delhi MLAs were last increased in 2011.
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