06/08/2015 7:39 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

First Give Up Crores In Benefits And Then Talk About Canteen Subsidies: MPs to Jay Panda

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
NEW DELHI, INDIA - JULY 27: BJD leader Jay Panda at Parliament House during the monsoon session on July 27, 2015 in New Delhi, India. Lok Sabha proceedings were repeatedly disrupted as the opposition once again raised the Lalit Modi and Vyapam issues, even as the speaker tried to conduct the business of the house. (Photo by Sushil Kumar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

NEW DELHI -- Just weeks after Jay Panda donned the hat of Good Samaritan by calling for an end to the subsidies enjoyed by lawmakers in the parliament canteen, the Biju Janata Dal leader has got some unexpected pushback from other lawmakers who have suggested that MPs should first give up "thousands of crores benefits/concessions."

On Wednesday, Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader M.B. Rajesh sent Panda a letter, signed by 11 other lawmakers, which said that his two family companies - Indian Charge Crome Ltd. (ICCL) and Indian Metals and Ferro Alloys (IMFA) - are among the top 20 bank defaulters in India.

The letter also said that ICCL has got a Rs2300 crore concession from IDBI, which amounts to 16.5 percent of its aggregate NPA (Non-performing asset) of Rs16,000 crores.

"MPs should set an example not merely by giving up food subsidy available in parliament canteen but by giving up all indirect and illegal subsidies like loan waivers, tax concessions," the letter said. "As in the case of subsidised food in parliament canteen, we expect you to take initiative in this case too by setting a personal example."

READ: Give It Up: MPs Don't Need Subsidised Snacks To Do Their Job

In a counter letter today, Panda today hit back at his critics for levelling "recycled allegations" against him, and asked them to consider the food subsidy issue on its own merit, especially since it has been questioned by the 1.10 million Indians who have given up subsidised cooking gas so that it can be directed to those in need.

On the allegations about bank loans, Panda points his detractors to a detailed refutation of these allegations he had previously posted on his website.

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