Islamabad: The Pakistan government has approved to increase the salary of Members of Parliament up to 146 percent.
Speaking to reporters on the decisions taken by the Cabinet on Wednesday, Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb said there were only two meager pay rises in the last 14 years for the members of the National Assembly and the Senate.
A five-member ministerial committee to review rules of the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) was constituted by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, besides ratifying nine agreements already signed with six countries, she added.
Marriyum said that the cabinet had also decided to repatriate Afghan refugees by December 2017.
The Dawn quoted the minister as saying that the salary of members of the National Assembly and the Senate has been raised from Rs 60,996 to Rs 150,000 which is a rise of 145.9 percent. The Cabinet has also approved a 26 percent rise in the salary of the National Assembly speaker and the Senate chairman (from Rs 162,659 to Rs 205,000) and a 23 percent rise in the salary of the deputy speaker and deputy chairman of the two houses of the parliament (from Rs 150,454 to Rs 185,000).
The salary of federal ministers has been raised from Rs 126, 387 to Rs 200,000 (58 percent), and the salary of state ministers from Rs 116, 909 to Rs 180,000 (54 percent).
The rises will be considered to be in effect from October 1.
Marriyum said it had become difficult for MPs to manage household expenditures with a monthly salary of Rs 44,000 considering the inflation in the last decade.
Dismissing the claims that parliament comprised of billionaires, she said details of the MPs` assets are available with the Election Commission of Pakistan and the Federal Board of Revenue, which shows that most of them are from the middle class.
She claimed that the members of provincial assemblies received much higher salaries than the members of the National Assembly and Senate.
Speaking in the Senate, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar had said that he had fulfilled his promise about salary revisions which he had made in the National Assembly during the budget session.