A parliamentary committee in Nepal recently reported that former dignitaries, including heads of state, prime ministers, ministers, chiefs of commissions and security bodies, justices and secretaries are using excessive security and other facilities worth millions of rupees from taxpayers’ money. The report triggered debate over how much facilities should former VIPs get.
But what about the present VIPs? Here’s what they draw from the state coffers.
The Prime Minister
According to prevailing rules, Nepal’s Prime Minister’s monthly pay is Rs 61,820 (around $572). The Prime Minister gets 306 litres of petrol and 40 litres of lubricant each month from the government. He also receives Rs 5,000 extra to pay his mobile bill.
The Prime Minister receives Rs 10,000 under ‘miscellaneous’ expenses, and if he goes on visits outside Kathmandu, he receives Rs 3,000 per day. In addition to this, he is authorised to hire up to 45 advisers and 35 staffers, including a photographer, driver and an accountant. All of them receive their pay from the state coffers.
Deputy Prime Minister
According to the prevailing laws, a Deputy Prime Minister’s monthly pay is Rs 52,160. The DPM is allowed to use only one vehicle. He receives 238 litres of petrol and 20 litres of lubricant from the government.
On top of it all, he gets a communication allowance of Rs 3,000 per month, and Rs 4,000 to accord hospitality to his guests.
According to prevailing laws, a minister’s monthly pay is Rs 48,770. A minister receives 207 litres of petrol and 20 litres of lubricant from the government.
A minister also receives Rs 3,000 to pay for his/her mobile phone expenses, and Rs 3,500 as ‘guest’ expenses.
It is illegal for any member of Cabinet to draw more facilities than what has been prescribed.
The biggest perk of being minister in Nepal, however, is that you have access to corridors of power, and that is what politics is all about!