ISLAMABAD - The federal government has thought it unwise to enhance the salaries and allowances of members of parliament in the face of the rising pressure from the opposition parties, particularly PTI, on the issue of Panama leaks and deferred the proposal for the next time, The Nation learnt yesterday.

The federal cabinet, when it met last month, deferred the decision on the summary moved by the finance division, the sources said. At the cabinet meeting, the ministers opposed the move by pointing out that at a time when the common man was facing inflation and high prices while allegations of corruption were hitting the headlines, such a move would evoke a negative reaction.

The cabinet was informed that Finance Act, 2016, empowered the federal government to determine changes in the basic pay scales of certain public office-holders from time to time.

According to a summary dated Sept 8, basic pay of the Senate chairman and NA speaker was proposed to enhance from Rs119,008 to Rs 205,000, an increase in the salaries of the Senate deputy chairman and the NA deputy speaker from Rs110,085 to Rs185,000.  Salaries of the MNAs were proposed to be increased from Rs44,630 to Rs150,000,  of federal ministers from Rs114,897 to Rs200,000 and those of ministers of state from Rs106,281 to Rs180,000.

Earlier, in May, the National Assembly adopted a report of a standing committee of the house recommending a three-fold raise in salaries and phenomenal increase in allowances of MNAs and senators.

The house adopted a report of the National Assembly on Rules of Procedure and Privileges for an increase in salaries, allowances and perks of parliamentarians belonging to the two houses of parliament. The monthly salary does not include allowances like air tickets, vouchers and other perks which are allowed to members when the houses are in session.