JS body wants PM, Speaker to step in
A parliamentary body yesterday sought the intervention of the prime minister and the Speaker to increase lawmakers' remuneration and allowances to a “logical level”, considering their status and expenditure.
In January, the parliamentary standing committee on law sent back a bill titled “Members of Parliament (Remuneration and Allowances) (Amendment) Bill-2016” to the cabinet division, saying lawmakers' remuneration and allowances should be hiked.
But the cabinet division has not yet made any move in this regard, a member of the committee who was present in yesterday's meeting at the Sangsad Bhaban, told The Daily Star.
Briefing reporters at the JS Media Centre, Suranjit Sengupta, chief of the committee, said they decided to talk to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Speaker Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury to realise the lawmakers' demand for increasing their remuneration and allowances.
Suranjit, also a ruling Awami League lawmaker, however, did not elaborate on the issue.
Meeting sources told The Daily Star that the committee assigned Chief Whip ASM Feroz to coordinate the process of solving the problem.
In yesterday's meeting, the JS body finalised four bills aimed at doubling the remuneration and privileges for president, prime minister, Speaker and deputy Speaker, ministers, state ministers and deputy ministers, Suranjit said.
In January, besides placing those four bills, Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury, who is in charge of the cabinet division on parliamentary affairs, placed the Members of Parliament (Remuneration and Allowances) (Amendment) Bill-2016 in parliament, proposing almost doubling the remuneration and privileges for the MPs.
Meeting sources said according to the proposed bill, an MP would get around Tk 1.20 lakh per month as remuneration and allowances.
Talking to this correspondent, Chief Whip Feroz said an MP usually spends over Tk 15,000 to 20,000 per day on various purposes, including hospitality and giving donations to people in their constituencies.
He said they are hopeful of resolving the issue following the intervention of the PM and the Speaker.