Lalu in vanguard in LS for salary hike

Last Updated: Wednesday, August 18, 2010 - 00:47

New Delhi: Batting hard for a fair deal to
law makers, an irrepressible Lalu Prasad today said those
opposing a salary hike for MPs were people having `beware of
dogs` warnings on their gates.

"Yehi logon ke ghar ke aagey `kuttey se savdhan` likha
hota hai, Kuttey ke saath sotey hain aur kuttey ko kiss karten
hai. (When you go to their houses, the warning on the gate
says `beware of dog`. These people sleep with their dog and
also kiss their dog)," Lalu said in the Lok Sabha.

His comments came a day after reports that there was
division in the Cabinet over the bill with some ministers
opposing it.

"Our salary is less than a junior clerk`s... we are
compelled to beg," he said making a forceful plea to the
government to "accept in full" a JPC report that recommended a
five-fold increase in the existing salary of Rs 16,000.

He said those opposing the JPC proposal were "insulting"
the MPs.

"These people have farm houses. They have bungalows worth
crores. They spend lavishly in their weddings and they stay in
five-star hotels," he added.

Besides, he suggested that there was difference in pay
packets of different law makers in the country, with MLAs from
Goa getting Rs one lakh.

"We have to give 100 cups of tea and food to visitors and
even have to give return fare to those who have come for
medical treatment. Our house is utilised like an ashram," he
said.

Making a oblique reference to the alleged corruption in
the Commonwealth Games and the IPL, he lamented "when the MPs
seek a better pay packet, we are told it would tarnish our
image."

He said television news channels were debating the issue
without considering the realities of today and were
"humiliating" MPs, asking why they needed a salary hike when
they were not working.

Ridiculing those who made rounds of leaders to seek Rajya
Sabha tickets, he said how could "those people understand the
pain and the suffering of those who had to walk with blisters
on their feet."

He said what they had asked for was a salary that was only
a Re 1 more than what the Cabinet Secretary got, primarily to
maintain protocol.

"We are being criticised for seeking hike in salaries by
certain persons, who stash away black money in Swiss banks,"
he said without naming anybody.

Prasad`s remarks received widespread support and cheer
from members cutting across party lines.

PTI



First Published: Wednesday, August 18, 2010 - 00:47

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