No salary hike for ‘poorly paid’ Tripura legislators

November 2nd, 2010 - 8:13 pm ICT by IANS  

Agartala, Nov 2 (IANS) Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar Tuesday rejected the demand to hike salaries and allowances of state legislators, who are stated to be getting the lowest salary among Indian lawmakers.

“We did not join politics to earn money, we are doing politics to serve the people,” Sarkar told agitated Congress legislators in the state assembly, whose winter session is now on.

Sarkar, also a Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) Politburo member, said: “The 13th Finance Commission headed by Vijay L. Kelkar has deprived Tripura in recommending sufficient central assistance, putting the northeastern state in an awkward financial position.”

According to the chief minister, Tripura has been facing a severe financial crisis.

“Currently, it is extreme difficulty on the part of the state government to provide salary and allowances to government employees and to maintain developmental works,” he added.

Opposition Congress legislators have demanded salary and allowances of the legislators at par with the secretary level officers of the state government.

“A legislator’s salary is now Rs.11,500 in Tripura while lawmakers of other northeastern states are on an average getting Rs.50,000 per month,” opposition leader Ratan Lal Nath said, adding that ministers and chief minister are getting salaries ranging from Rs.12,300 to Rs.12,500.

“The salaries and allowances of legislators, opposition leader, ministers and chief minister are lowest in Tripura among the Indian states,” Nath added.

Congress legislator Sudip Roy Burman, also an engineer, has demanded that a standing committee be constituted to review the salary and allowances of legislators.

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