The Uttar Pradesh government on Tuesday tabled an ordinance in the Legislative Assembly to stop payment of the state ministers' income tax by the exchequer, an expense it is bearing for the past 40 years.
In September, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath had asked ministers to start paying their own income tax.
The direction followed criticism in the media of a law enacted in 1981 which ensured that the state ministers don't pay any income tax themselves. The amount goes to the income tax authorities from the state exchequer every year.
The ordinance, if promulgated, will ensure that the chief minister and all other UP ministers pay their own taxes.
"Uttar Pradesh Minister (Salary, Allowance and Miscellaneous Provision) (Amendment) Ordinance was tabled in UP Assembly by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Suresh Khanna. It pertains to stoppage of payment of income tax by the state government payable by ministers on their salaries," UP Justice and Legislative Affairs Minister Brijesh Pathak told PTI.
The Uttar Pradesh Ministers' Salaries, Allowances and Miscellaneous Act, 1981 was enacted when Vishwanath Pratap Singh was the chief minister of the state.
Chief ministers who never had to pay taxes due to this law include Yogi Adityanath, Mulayam Singh Yadav, Akhilesh Yadav, Mayawati, Kalyan Singh, Ram Prakash Gupta, Rajnath Singh, Sripati Mishra, Vir Bahadur Singh and N D Tiwari.
In the last financial year, the state government paid Rs 86 lakh to foot the ministers' tax bill, a senior Finance Ministry official said.