‘I’ve no plans to give up pension benefits from Govt’
Senior separatist leader and Hurriyat Conference (G) general secretary Ghulam Nabi Sumji Thursday said seeking hike and other perks in his MLA pension is his right and he won’t give it up.
“We are at war with India against its military presence here. But pension and arrears are my right and why should I leave it,” Sumji told Rising Kashmir.
Sumji was an MLA of Muslim United Front (MUF) from 1987-89 and had represented Hom- ShaliBug constituency of Anantnag.
He resigned in 1989 when the armed struggle erupted in the state and joined Hurriyat Conference to represent Muslim Conference.
Sumji said his party leader and Chairman Syed Ali Geelani who was also an MLA had already given up the pension.
“But I am taking the pension as an ex-MLA. I have no plans to give up my pension. It becomes my right. It is no charity by someone on me. Since I was an MLA, so it is my right,” he said.
Sumji, who is one of richest Hurriyat leaders, said one of his friend who is also a former legislator informed him about the enhanced pension and arrears.
In 2015, he had applied for MLA pension, enhancement of pension and release of all arrears saying he had not claimed any pensionary benefits.
Sumji told Rising Kashmir that he has written a letter to the Secretary J&K Legislative Assembly seeking his arrears and enhanced pension dues.
“I came to know from one of my colleague, who is an MLA that the pension has been enhanced. So I wrote a letter to Assembly Secretary and told him that my dues should be paid to me as it is my right,” he said.
The letter reads, “Sir, with due respect I beg to submit that pension of ex-MLAs has been revised and the arrear dues have been released by the Act. It is therefore prayed that my increased pension along with arrear dues be released in my favour. The photocopies are attached”.
The letter has also gone viral on social media and received mixed reactions from the netizens.
Aijaz Wani, a Facebook user posted, “A classical case of running with the hare and hunting with the hound or the like.”
The development has come two months after the state government implemented the 7th Pay Commission recommendations with effect from January 2016.