Kolkata: The West Bengal Legislative Assembly (Members Emolument) Amendment Bill passed in the state Assembly on Tuesday, has hiked the allowances of MLAs attending the sessions from Rs 750 to Rs 1000.

Responding to objections raised by opposition members, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Partho Chaterjee said the legislators in West Bengal as compared to other states are getting less allowances, so the move was need of the hour. In order to work as a public representative, he said, an MLA should be financially sound.

Present Minister for Public Health Engineering Subrata Mukherjee said, “There should not be so much commotion on hiking the allowance. Rather, all the members of ruling and the opposition should collectively recommend the appointment of a committee to look into the matter of wages as well as allowances to the Speaker.”

He further said, “The CPM members who are opposed to the hike in allowances should also state that they won’t take the increased allowance.”

Replying to Mukherjee’s argument, senior CPM MLA Anisur Rehman said, “We do not oppose to the hiking of allowance as the same has already been recommended by the erstwhile Left Front government,” adding that passing it through an ordinance was not an appropriate decision.

It may be noted that the Left Front has been opposing the style of functioning of the present Trinamool Congress regime.

JPN/Bureau