Parliamentarians’ Families To Get Free Air Travel, Senate Committee Decides
Senate Committee on Finance & Revenue has unanimously approved a bill allowing the families of parliamentarians to have Rs300,000 annual travel vouchers and 25 business class domestic air tickets. However, the federal government didn’t increase the salaries of government employees for the next fiscal year FY 2020-21 citing lack of funds in the national exchequer.
The bill was moved by Adviser to Prime Minister on Parliamentary Affairs Babar Awan in the Senate. Pakistan Today reported that committee chairman Senator Farooq Hamid Naek endorsed the bill and said that all parliamentarians are not rich. He said that Members of Parliament (Salaries and Allowances) Amendment Bill 2020, would not have an additional burden on the national exchequer since “changes were only made in the procedures”.
According to the Parliamentary Affairs Division, the free travel privilege for parliamentarians was regulated under Section 10 of the Members of Parliament (Salary & Allowances) Act 1974, wherein members will be entitled to 25 business class open return air tickets per annum from the airport nearest to their constituencies to Islamabad.
Moreover, Rs300,000 yearly vouchers will also be provided to parliamentarians as well as their family members for travelling by air or train.
The bill further noted that if a member is not interested in getting vouchers then they shall be paid an allowance, equivalent to the entitled value of the vouchers.