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Congress president Sonia Gandhi writes to PM Modi, offers five suggestions to tackle coronavirus

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 7 April 2020, 16:11 IST

Congress leader Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday responded to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for suggestion in the battle against coronavirus.

The Congress president suggested the Prime Minister to debar Rs 20,000 crore central vista beautification and construction project immediately. “Austerity measures which can be used to divert much needed funds to fight against Covid-19 are need of the hour,” Sonia Gandhi said in her letter.

Sonia Gandhi in addition stated that the recommendations are in response to her talk with PM Modi over phone. “In your call yesterday, you very kindly asked me to convey to you any suggestions our party has to meet the grave challenge of Covid-19. It is in this spirit that I write to you.”

Among the suggestions, the Congress president has put in for out and out ban on government advertisments given to the media for two years.

I am sure that you will root out value in these recommendations, She further wrote in her letter.

This comes after the Union Cabinet decided to trim the salaries of the Prime Minister, other ministers, and parliamentarians by 30% for a year, and suspend for two years, a scheme under which leaders get Rs 5 crore a year to splash out on development work (MPLAD scheme), with every bucks saved going into the common fund of India to be utilized to curb coronavirus.

That’s anticipated to work out to around Rs 7,930 crore. From this, a total of approxmately Rs 29 crore will come from the salaries of legislators.

Furthermore, the President, Vice President and the governors of state has also resolved to take salary cuts.

A legislator is paid a salary of Rs 1,00,000 plus allowances. A member of parliament would give Rs 30,000 per month and Rs 3,60,000 in the year.

The salary of the Prime Minister is the same as other Mps. The President is paid a salary of Rs 5 lakh a month while the Vice President is paid Rs 4 lakh a month. The president, vice president and governors have also come forward to take a 30% cut.

The integrated fund of India is the fund into which all tax revenues flow, and the one utilized to make the majority of payments.

PM Modi had presided over the cabinet meeting and then a meeting of his council of ministers. Both were carried out through video conference.

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First published: 7 April 2020, 16:11 IST