Pay hike unconstitutional: NC

Published on Jan 21 2009 // Main News
Thimphu, January 21: The National Council members Tuesday termed the government decision to increase the salary as constitutional since it undermined the role of Pay Commission, as provisioned by constitution.
The NC members while debating the pay hike said government has the authority either to approve or disapprove the recommendation but not to make any amendments on it. They said the pay hike has increased the gap between poor and rich. 
The government has announced salary increment merging two recommendations – from Pay Commission and Finance Ministry. The Pay Commission is a constitutional organ and thus is an autonomous body. 
Replying to MPs, Minister for Finance Wangdi Norbu said since the Pay Commission recommendation was made in 2008, government had to undergo revision to make changes owing to growing economic crisis. He said another pay increase will be within tenth five year plan. 
He defended that PM denied increasing his salary considering the economic condition of the country, adding the pay hike was to prevent the country from succumbing to debt.
He also said that the government would increase the pay within the 10th five year plan if the economic development allows it to do so.
The MPs also questioned the use of discretionary grant given to Prime Minister and Ministers – Nu 300,000 and 200,000 per year respectively. Bhutan News Service