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British Indian among ten most paid councillors

Indian-origin Darra Singh has found a place among the top ten according to UK's local council's remuneration packages.

india Updated: Mar 31, 2008 02:18 IST

It's not only business tycoons like Lakshmi Mittal ruling the richie-rich club of Britain, but people of Indian origin are also making it big among the top-earning local council officials.

According to a a new list of highest paid government officials in various local councils of the UK, Indian-origin Darra Singh has found a place among the top ten in terms of their local authority remuneration packages. There are at least half a dozen Indian-origin council officials in the UK earning at least 100,000 pounds a year.

Ealing Council Chief Executive Singh, whose mother is said to have shifted base from Punjab in India to the UK about 50 years ago, also figures among the 14 local authority officials earning more than the Prime Minister Gordon Brown and has bagged the third biggest pay hike among all the officials of more than 450 councils in the country that were considered for the study.

The “Town Hall Rich List” has been published by an independent taxation campaign group Tax Payers' Alliance (TPA) and includes 818 council officials with total remuneration in excess of 1,00,000 pounds for the year 2006-07.

The TPA study, which is based on information collected using Freedom of Information Act (FIA), has named Peter Gould, outgoing chief executive of Northamptonshire council, as the highest paid with an annual remuneration of 215,000 pounds.

Singh has been ranked at eighth position with a package of 195,000 pounds for the year 2006-07, which represented a 58.8 per cent increase from 123,099 pounds in the previous year.

This is third biggest hike for all officials mentioned in the list after Northampton Council Chief Mairi Mclean (64 per cent) and Redcar and Cleveland Council’s Children’s Services Director Jennifer Lewis (59.8 per cent).

“The TPA has had to compile the list through Freedom of Information requests to every local authority. A recalcitrant minority still refuse to provide this information, on highly questionable grounds,” TPA said. PTI