Akhilesh' 'pricey' gifts raises eyebrows; MLA's rejoice

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Akhilesh Yadav
Lucknow, Jul 3: Making little of the austerity measures announced by the Centre and the perceived fund crunch that Uttar Pradesh faces, UP CM Akhilesh Yadav made a daring proposal to utilise the  Constituency Development Funds for buying personal vehicles for MLA's. This largesse by the CM has evoked sharp criticism and is sure to burn a hole in the state coffers.

On the assumption that if all 403 MLAs buy a car worth Rs 20 lakh, the cost to the state exchequer will be Rs 80.60 crore. 

Speaking at the state Assembly, Akhilesh said that each of the 403 MLAs should be allowed to buy vehicles not worth more than Rs 20 lakh so that they can oversee developmental work in their constituencies. The only condition being that they will have to return the vehicles after their 5 year tenure in office. The law regarding the Constituency Development Funds states that such funds cannot be utilised for personal benefits.

Every MLA also gets Rs 2 crore from the development fund to be utilised in their respective constituencies.

Last month the SP-led government had proposed to enhance the Legislator Area Development (LAD) Fund locally known as Vidhayak Nidhi. Akhilesh had commented that the government will positively consider an increase in the Vidhayak Nidhi. 

The BSP had lambasted Akhilesh's move to dole out gifts for the MLA's. 

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