Speaker’s Rs 49.9K reimbursement for specs sparks row
Thiruvananthapuram: After Health Minister K K Shailaja’s ‘expensive’ pair of spectacles triggered a controversy, Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan too has sparked a debate for claiming Rs 49,900 reimbursement for his specs.
According to information obtained through RTI, the Speaker has spent Rs 4,900 for the frame and Rs 45,000 for the lens and obtained reimbursement from the government for the same.
The huge reimbursement for a pair of spectacles comes at a time when the government is looking for ways to cut government spending due to financial crisis. During the state budget presentation on Friday, Finance Minister Thomas Isaac had said that the government is switching to austerity mode.
Minister K K Shailaja had too faced similar controversy for claiming Rs 28,000 reimbursement for spectacles.
Earlier, when Vakkom Purushothaman was the speaker, he had landed in trouble for claiming a huge amount as reimbursement for spectacles. Following this, the claim limit for the frame was set at Rs 5,000. As per the claim document of Sreeramakrishnan, the reimbursement for frame is Rs 4,900 and the cost of lens is quoted as Rs 45,000.
The RTI reply also show that the Speaker has claimed Rs 4,25,000 as medical reimbursement during the period.
Reacting to the reports, Sreeramakrishnan said he purchased lens as directed by the doctor.