Lok Sabha MP from Thiruvananthapuram, Shashi Tharoor backed the central government's proposal to double the salaries for MPs, saying it would be 'hypocritical' to criticise the move.
The government's proposal to double monthly remuneration, and an automatic increase every five years for MPs was opposed by the Trinamool Congress which maintained that MPs get 'paid enough'.
In a Facebook post, Tharoor said salaries of MPs currently is 'ridiculously inadequate' and not sufficient to make ends meet 'without a supplementary income or some source of corruption'.
"It is impossible to make ends meet without a supplementary income or some source of corruption. Don't point to free air tickets: they are used for travel to and from the constituency and cannot be monetised to cover actual expenses," he said.
In the Budget speech on February 1, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had proposed a law for an automatic revision of salaries for Parliamentarians every five years indexed to inflation. He added the law would also provide for automatic revision of emoluments every five years indexed to inflation and members would welcome this initiative and "not suffer such criticism in the future".
The proposed changes in MPs’ salaries are doubling of monthly salary from Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh and increase of pension from Rs 20,000 to Rs 25,000 per month. The daily allowance of Rs 2,000 and the constituency allowance of Rs 45,000 remain unchanged.
The remuneration of an MP currently includes a basic salary of Rs 50,000 per month and Rs 45,000 as constituency allowance, apart from other perks. The government spends roughly Rs 2.7 lakh on every MP per month.
On criticisms over the move, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor called it 'hypocritical'.
"MP salaries are ridiculously inadequate. It would be hypocritical to criticize a salary increase unless you can come up with a formula for doing all that an MP is expected to do within this amount."
(Inputs from agencies)