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Slash in salaries and allowances of legislators, Ministers likely

Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa has called a meeting of the State Cabinet at 11 a.m. on Thursday and it is expected to take a decision on slashing monthly salaries and allowances of MLAs, MLCs, and Ministers. The expected salary/allowances cut is around 30%.

Reliable sources said that Mr. Yediyurappa held a telephonic conversation with Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah and consulted him on the salary cut. The Congress leader has reportedly endorsed the Chief Minister’s suggestion.

The Union Cabinet has decided to reduce salaries of MPs by 30% and has suspended MPLAD funds for two years to mobilise more funds to fight COVID-19.

The Cabinet is expected to discuss methods to be adopted in case of extension of the COVID-19 lockdown in hotspot districts and its impact on the State’s finances.

Cabinet Ministers are also expected to brief the Chief Minister of the actions taken by their departments in handling the impact of the disease. Issues related to health, agriculture, and agricultural marketing, transport, drinking water situation, free distribution of KMF milk, rations under PDS, inter-district transportation, and holding of SSLC and PU examinations are likely to figure in the meeting, sources said.

The Finance Department is expected to brief the Cabinet on the impact of lockdown on the fiscal situation, including slowdown in revenue mobilisation from different departments. The State government has constituted 17 task forces in various fields and the government is expected to look into the suggestions of the task forces while taking decisions.

Based on the output received from different districts, departments, and task forces, the Cabinet meeting is expected to chalk out a plan to deal with the situation in case the lockdown is extended as demanded by some State Chief Ministers.

The Cabinet may take a call on forming a team of Ministers to provide suggestions to the Centre on the lockdown and likely relaxation of lockdown in COVID-19 free districts of the State.

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