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SC to Kerala Govt: Pay teachers or will review MLAs' expenses

Rejecting the argument that it was facing cash crunch, the Supreme Court today warned the Kerala government that it would review the expenses incurred on ministers and MLAs if the state failed to pay arrears for 17 years to part-time teachers.

india Updated: Sep 14, 2009 21:43 IST

Rejecting the argument that it was facing cash crunch, the Supreme Court on Monday warned the Kerala government that it would review the expenses incurred on ministers and MLAs if the state failed to pay arrears for 17 years to part-time teachers.

In a lighter vein, a bench of Justices B N Aggrawal and G S Singhvi also asked the state government counsel "Your chief minister travels by which class, economy or business?"

The remarks come in the backdrop of the austerity measures suggested by the UPA government to all its ministers
and government functionaries.

"We can't go by your claims. If you do not comply with the order by September 30, we will have to review the expenses
incurred on your ministers and MLAs," the bench sternly told the counsel who agreed to abide by the direction.

The apex court made the remarks while dealing with a Special Leave Petition (SLP) filed by the Aided Higher
Secondary Teachers Association challenging the reluctance of the state to pay arrears to part-time teachers in state
government and aided schools.

During the argument, the state government has taken the stance that due to financial crunch it was not able to
implement a government order issued on August 19, 2008, relating to payment of arrears to part-time teachers with
retrospective effect from 1992.