Staff Reporter

Against public interest, says BJP leader Vijay Jolly

NEW DELHI: Senior BJP leader and Saket MLA Vijay Jolly on Friday criticised the approval granted by the Union Government for a salary increase for the legislators of Delhi including the Chief Minister and her Council of Ministers. Condemning the decision, Mr. Jolly said it was against public interest.

In a statement, Mr. Jolly said at a time when the ordinary citizen of the Capital is upset with increasing inflation, rising prices of essential commodities, hikes in water and power charges, fast running electricity meters and inflated bills and the issue of sealing and demolitions, the Congress Government had gone ahead with the salary hike for MLAs indicating its insensitivity to the woes of the common man.

"It is a political gimmick by the Chief Minister just days before the start of the Delhi Assembly session from October 30 in order to placate her MLAs and ensure a smooth session,'' he charged.

Stating that the Ministers and the MLAs need to be given administrative powers rather than monetary sops, Mr. Jolly said the political leadership of Congress as well as the Chief Minister had reduced the citizens' elected representatives to mute spectators as they have no power or authority in a bureaucracy-dominated set up.

Mr. Jolly said he would have endorsed and supported the salary bonanza had the annual MLA Constituency Development Fund been raised from Rs. 2 crores to Rs. 4 crores per annum simultaneously. This would have enabled the elected MLAs to undertake various welfare schemes in their constituencies. He urged the Delhi Govt. to reconsider its unpopular decision and save the elected MLAs from public humiliation. "The Delhi MLAs cannot make merry when the common is burdened and suffering," he added.