Himachal Pradesh assembly passed the bills regarding pay hikes of Speaker, Deputy Speaker, Chief Minister, Cabinet and state Ministers, CPS and legislatures with voice vote. Earlier yesterday Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh has placed four bills in the state Assembly, seeking hike in salaries and allowances of ministers, Speaker, Deputy Speaker and MLAs.

With the assembly nod, now the salary of chief minister will be Rs 65,000, earlier it was Rs 39, 000, the salary increase of cabinet minister to Rs 50,000 from Rs 36,000; minister of state will not get Rs 48,000 earlier it was Rs 33,000 to and that of deputy minister Rs 45,000 from Rs 32,000 per month.

Telephone allowances are to increase for ministers from Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000 besides making a provision for a sumptuary allowance of Rs 30,000 per minister per month.

The bill related to salary of speaker and deputy speaker has proposed to increase the salary amount from Rs 36,000 to Rs 50,000 for speaker and from Rs 33,000 to Rs 45,000 for deputy speaker. Telephone allowance has also been proposed to be doubled from Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000, besides permitting a sumptuary allowance of Rs 30,000 per month.

A bill to increase salaries of Chief Parliamentary Secretaries (CPS) from Rs 23,000 to Rs 40,000 and that of Parliamentary Secretary (PS) from Rs 22,000 to Rs 35,000 per month was also moved.

MLAs are to get a salary hike from from Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000, telephone allowance increase from Rs 10,000 to Rs 15,000 per member, constituency allowance increase Rs 35,000 to Rs 60,000 and office allowance is to double from Rs 5000 to Rs 10,000 per month, taking the legislators months takeout from Rs 70, 000 to Rs. 1.15 lakh.

The house also proposes an increase for former MLAs whose pensions will go up from Rs 18,000 to Rs 22,000 per month.

The average 60 percent hike in pay proposed would bill the state fund-starved exchequer about Rs 6 crore annually.