Parliament canteen ends food subsidy; Now food will be costlier, says Speaker

New Delhi, January 19: Food and other items served in the Parliament canteen will become expensive for Members of Parliament as subsidy for this has been discontinued, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said on Tuesday.

Although Birla did not specify the financial implications of the move, sources said that the Lok Sabha Secretariat could save more than Rs 8 crore with the end of the annual subsidy.

Talking to reporters about the preparations for the next Parliament session starting on 29 January, Birla also said that now the canteen of Parliament will be run by ITDC in place of Northern Railway.

Birla said that all members of Parliament would be requested to undergo COVID-19 test before the commencement of the budget session.

While the Rajya Sabha will sit from 9 am to 2 pm, the Lok Sabha will run from 4-8 pm in the second half. Question Hour will be allowed during the session for a pre-decided time of one hour.

He said that all arrangements have also been made for MPs’ RTPCR COVID-19 tests near his residence.

In the Parliament complex, RTPCR tests will be held on 27–28 January, while arrangements have also been made for these tests of MPs ’families and staff.

Birla said that the vaccination campaign policy finalized by the Center and the states would also apply to MPs.