President, MPs, ministers take a pay cut for 1 year, say it is a message

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday cleared an ordinance to slash salaries of parliamentarians and ministers by 30 per cent for one year in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.

The Cabinet also decided to suspend the MP local area development scheme for two years and transfer the money into the government's consolidated fund. The money under MPLADS is around Rs 7,900 crore for two years: 2020-21 and 2021-22.

Union information and broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar told reporters that President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and governors had also offered to take the 30 percent cut in salaries.

Briefing media after the Cabinet meeting, Javadekar said the Cabinet has approved the ordinance amending the salary, allowances and pension of Members of Parliament Act, 1954, reducing their salary, allowances and pension by 30 per cent. This will be effective from April 1 for a year.

The decision came hours after PM Modi told BJP workers to prepare for a long haul. The country and its people can't afford to get tired or rest in this long war, he said.

'This is a landmark decision that sends the right signals,' Javadekar told reporters.

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