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MLA pay hike: Farmers resort to ‘footwear-hitting’ stir

A day after the state government announced almost 100 per cent increase in the MLAs’ salaries, farmers from the state protesting in the national capital resorted to a ‘footwear’ stir opposing the move.

MLA pay hike: Farmers resort to ‘footwear-hitting’ stir
Farmers beat self with footwear for voting ?insensitive? MLAs to the state Assembly

New Delhi

The farmers at Jantar Mantar on Thursday hit themselves with footwear as a ‘punishment’ for voting for the state legislators, who have allegedly turned a deaf ear towards farmers’ issues. “We regret to have voted for such legislators. When we are begging in front of the government to fulfil our demands, the state government is hiking salaries of MLAs by 100 per cent,” farmers’ leader P Ayyakkannu said. 

The life of a farmer is worse than the life of a beggar, he said. The farmers continued their protest for the fifth day in the national capital demanding a farm loan waiver, crop insurance for individual farmers and setting up of the Cauvery Management Board by the Centre. The state government on Wednesday almost doubled the salary and allowances of MLAs, taking their new pay packet to Rs 1.05 lakh a month. 

Allowances for the Chief Minister, Ministers, the Speaker, Deputy Speaker, the Leader of the Opposition and the Government Chief Whip were also increased with (retrospective) effect from July 1 this year. Similarly, the ‘MLA Constituency Development Scheme’ fund allocation was hiked to Rs 2.50 crore from the present Rs 2 crore from this year (2017-18). 

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