On Tuesday, President Ram Nath Kovind promulgated 'The Salaries, Allowances and Pension of Members of Parliament (Amendment) Ordinance, 2020'. This was approved by the Union Cabinet on April 6. According to the ordinance, it was necessary to raise resources for the fight against the novel coronavirus. For this purpose, a new sub-section has been inserted in Section 3 of 'The Salaries, Allowances and Pension of Members of Parliament Act, 1954' to reduce the salaries payable to Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha MPs by 30%. This will be applicable for a period of one year from April 1, 2020. Currently, there are 4789 confirmed novel coronavirus cases in India out of which 353 people have recovered while 124 individuals have lost their lives.
Addressing a press briefing after the Union Cabinet meeting on Monday, Information and Broadcasting Minister Prakash Javadekar talked about the decision to bring in an ordinance to amend 'The Salaries, Allowances and Pension of Members of Parliament Act, 1954'. Moreover, he revealed that President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and all the Governors had voluntarily decided to take a 30% salary cut. Javadekar also announced the suspension of the MPLADS funds for two years.
He stated that Rs.7,900 crore saved from the MPLADS will go to the Consolidated Fund of India. Furthermore, he noted that many MPs had already pledged their MPLADS funds of Rs.5 crore per year to combat the novel coronavirus crisis. While politicians cutting across party lines welcomed the move to slash salaries, they did not take kindly to the suspension of the MPLADs funds.
The Cabinet also decided to cancel allocation of Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) funds. MPLADS will be 'suspended for two years, 2020-21 and 2021-22. #cabinetdecisions pic.twitter.com/NhFCA0oRwr— Prakash Javadekar (@PrakashJavdekar) April 6, 2020