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SC dismisses petition questioning lifetime pension for MPs
The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a petition challenging the perks, including lifetime pension and travel allowances given to former parliamentarians saying that Parliament alone has the wisdom to decide if the said benefits given to lawmakers was rational.
The petition was filed by NGO Lok Prahari against an order passed by Allahabad High Court which came to the conclusion that the Parliament has power to legislate on whether pension must be paid to ex-MPs. The apex bench of Justices J Chelameswar and Sanjay Kishan Kaul agreed with this conclusion and said that the decision as to whether the various benefits given to the lawmakers was “rational” having regard to the affluent financial status of some of the MPs or the poverty of the millions of people rested within the realm of Parliament’s wisdom.
It held that the expression “allowances” of MPs occurring under Entry 73 of List I of the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution was wide enough to cover the payment of “pension” and other benefits to the Members of Parliament or ex-MPs.
The Centre had submitted that the entitlement of former MPs to get pension and travel allowances was a matter of their dignity and must be maintained as even after MPs complete their tenure they keep visiting their constituencies.
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