|October 20, 2014 at 12:24 pm #5625|
Taking a cue from chief minister Manohar Parrikar’s recent statement advocating better salaries for legislators, panchayat members from Salcete have raised a demand for a hike in their salaries, on the grounds that they also being elected representatives incur huge expenses in redressing the grievances of their villagers.
Parrikar, while delivering the valedictory address at the All India whips’ conference at Cavelossim, had said that while a Goan MLA draws monthly salary of 1.35 lakh, he spends two to three lakh per month in doling out financial assistance to the needy section of society within his constituency.
Taking note of the chief minister’s statement, the Salcete block panchayat forum has sought to underscore that the demands for a rise in the “paltry” salaries of panchayat members have been persistently ignored by the state government.
“Panchayat members who are also elected representatives at the grassroots level get a paltry sum of 3,000 as monthly remuneration without any perks and pension. The chief minister has stated that MLAs have to spend money to attend to their constituents, while he conveniently fails to see that panchayat members also have to attend to the woes of their electorate in assisting them in their difficulties and to avail various government schemes. The MLAs and ministers have the bureaucracy at their beck and call and need not step into public offices,” a press note issued by the spokesperson of Salcete block panchayat forum, Maria Monteiro, said.
The press note further states that “the emoluments and benefits of MLAs are enhanced time and again by themselves without even bothering about the elected representatives at the grassroots level.”
Referring to the chief minister’s remark that “if you throw peanuts you only get monkeys”, the forum demanded that the chief minister put his belief into practice “by beginning at the grassroots by substantially enhancing the existing salaries of panchayat members and also granting them pension and benefits as those enjoyed by the MLAs.
Source/Reference: Times of India, “Now, Salcete panchas demand hike in salaries“