Members of Parliament are set to get increased allowances with the Union Cabinet on Wednesday giving its nod to a proposal to hike the allowances by amending Housing and Telephone Facilities (Members of Parliament) Rules, 1956, Members of Parliament (Constituency Allowance) Rules, 1986, and Members of Parliament (Office Expense Allowance) Rules, 1988.
Once cleared, the MPs will be entitled to an increase in allowances for furniture from Rs 75,000 to Rs 1 lakh, which shall be increased after every five years, commencing from April 2023 on the basis of cost inflation index. The constituency allowance of Rs 45000 has also been increased to 70,000 per month, with the changes set to be effective from April 1, 2018. The office expense allowance has been increased from Rs 45000 per month to Rs 60,000 and will be applicable from April 2018.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had announced in his budget speech that a permanent mechanism would be set up to revise the salaries of MPs every five years, and it would be linked to inflation. At present, Centre spends around Rs 2.7 lakh a month on an MP. The revision of allowances will lead to an additional financial burden of Rs 39 crore under recurring expenditure and over Rs 6 crore under non-recurring expenditure on the exchequer.
The Lok Sabha has 536 MPs, including two nominated from the Anglo-Indian community, and the Speaker. There are eight vacancies. The Rajya Sabha has 239 members. Broadband internet facility will also be provided to MPs starting from August 2006 against 10,000 surrendered call units per annum on landline connection. Among other perks will be Wi-fi zone with monthly tariff plan of Rs 1700 from September 2015 to December 2016 and Rs 2200 from January 2017 onwards.
The cabinet decision will be conveyed to the Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of Members of Parliament for making amendments in the relevant rules, which shall be approved and confirmed by the Chairman of the Council of States and the Speaker of House of the People and will be published in the Official Gazette.