Celebrities are often accused of just showing lip sympathy for the common people. Most believe that they make very bad politicians or administrators. Two celebrity members of the upper house in Parliament (Rajya Sabha) – cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar and cinema legend Rekha – have not spent a single paisa from their Members of the Parliament Local Area Development (MPLAD) fund towards the development of the area they have adopted after they were nominated to the house of elders two years ago.
The members of the Rajya Sabha will have to adopt a district of their choice as their area for development. While Sachin Tendulkar has adopted Mumbai Suburban as his district, Rekha has not even adopted any district. According to Parliament records their percent of utilisation is ‘Zero’.
According to http://mplads.nic.in, these two have not sent any development work proposal to the government. Both have an entitlement amount of Rs 10 crore each in their MPLAD account. Each MP is entitled for Rs 5 crore MPLAD fund every year.
These MPs have to indentify developmental work in their area and send proposal to the local District Collector or District Magistrate or Deputy Commissioner. They can take up minor developmental works like road building, construction school buildings, community halls, installing free drinking water tanks and building bus shelters etc in their area.
Among the rest of nominated MPs (there are total 12 nominated MPs, one post is vacant. Rajya Sabha has 250 members), noted theatre personality B Jayashree from Karnataka and educationist Bhalchandra Mungekar from Maharashtra have so far spent Rs 12 crore each on various developmental works.
Veteran journalist HK Dua, who has adopted South Municipal Corporation of Delhi as his area has so far spent Rs 10.50 crore. Anu Agha who has adopted Pune has so far spent just Rs 5 crore and noted lyricist Javed Akhtar who has also adopted Mumbai Suburban like Sachin Tendulkar has so far spent Rs 4.5 crore.
Eminent jurist K Parasaran who has adopted Chennai has so far spent Rs 2.5 crore. Mrinal Miri, who has adopted Kamrup metropolitan area, has so far spent just Rs 2.5 crore and Ashok S Ganguly has spent Rs 5.5 crore. He has adopted Mumbai city as his area.
Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar who has gone to Rajya Sabha as a nominated member has so for spent Rs12 crore. He has adopted Nagapattinam in Tamil Nadu as his area. His per cent of utilisation is 100.50 per cent and Dua’s utilisation is 95.52 per cent.
The Rajya Sabha term is for 6 years. If an MP does not spend his or her yearly entitlement of Rs.5 crore in that Financial Year, that money will be added to the next year’s fund. It won’t lapse. Both Sachin and Rekha have Rs 10 crore each in their MPLAD fund. It will be added to next FY’s Rs 5 crore. After April 1, they have Rs 15 crore in their MPLAD account.