SHILLONG: Opposition legislator and Congress leader Charles Pyngrope has suggested a salary cut of 50 per cent from all the 60 MLAs of Meghalaya in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Pyngrope made this suggestion during the general discussion on the Budget in the first day of the reassembled Budget session of the Assembly.
Recently, it was decided that Meghalaya MLAs will donate 10 per cent of salary to Chief Minister's Relief Fund for a year.
"The 10 per cent salary cut for MLAs was not much, as only Rs 6,000 was deducted from my pay. It would be in the fitness of things that salary of all legislators is cut by 50 per cent to contribute to the State's coffers," the Opposition Congress legislator said initiating a Budget discussion.
Pyngrope also said that the government should restore the full salary of the group B, C and D employees.
"The government employees may have taken various types of loans and after deducting those and apart from the salary deferment they would have nothing left," the Congress MLA who was a former Speaker of the Assembly said.
Pyngrope also suggested that all the tours of the various committees should be withdrawn for this year and the fund allocated for this purpose to the Assembly should be returned to the government to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.
It may be mentioned that the Meghalaya government had announced a deferment of 50 per cent in the gross salary of the Chief Minister, Deputy Chief Minister and Ministers besides All India Services Officers and central services officers on deputation to Meghalaya due to fall in revenue during the lockdown.
A deferment of 35 per cent in the gross salary of Group A and B officers, and 25 per cent in respect of Group C staff of all departments except for all officers and staff of the health, home (police) and home (civil defence and home guards) departments.