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Sachin Tendulkar, Rekha Draw Curtains on Their 'Absent' Parliamentary Career

Their poor attendance record and almost negligible participation in Parliamentary affairs have often become subject of other MPs' ire.

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Updated:March 29, 2018, 3:10 PM IST
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Sachin Tendulkar, Rekha Draw Curtains on Their 'Absent' Parliamentary Career
File photo of cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar.
New Delhi: Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar and Bollywood icon Rekha are among the 40 Rajya Sabha members about to retire in the coming weeks. Walking out of Parliament, as its active member, for the last time may be a nostalgic moment for some. But these two celebrities are unlikely to be affected by emotions like nostalgia.

That's because the two celebrities have barely spent any time in Parliament after being nominated to Rajya Sabha in 2012. Sachin Tendulkar has a 7.3% attendance record in Parliament since he was made a member of it, and Rekha, woefully, has attended only 4.5% sessions.

Since April 2012, when they were made members, as per records available till the beginning of this month, Tendulkar has attended just 29 of the nearly 400 Parliament sessions. He asked just 22 questions and introduced 0 bills. The master batsman earned Rs 86.23 lakh as salary since his joining.

Rekha has since April 2012, attended just 18 sessions, she has asked no questions and introduced no bills during her tenure. She has earned Rs 99.59 lakh, or nearly a crore, as an MP in the last six years.

Their poor attendance record and almost negligible participation in Parliamentary affairs have often become subject of other MPs' ire.

In 2017, then Samajwadi Party leader and now BJP member, Naresh Agarwal, questioned their lack of commitment towards Parliamentary duties. In August last year Agarwal, who himself is among the members of the upper house that are about to retire, had suggested that both the celebrities resign from Parliament since they hardly seemed interested in their work.

Members of other parties, including CPI(M), had also criticised the two Parliamentarians for ignoring their responsibilities. Some had even suggested that they be sacked for abstaining from the Parliament for more than 60 days.

Data released in 2014 publicly about the amount spent by the MPs under their MPLAD funds showed that two years into their tenure as MPs, both the celebrities had not spent even a penny from their development funds.

All Rajya Sabha MPs are allowed Rs 5 crore annually as funds to be utilised for development of any sector in any part of the country.

Only after receiving flak from the media did Rekha and Sachin get down to utilising the funds. Sachin adopted two villages —Puttamraju Kandriga in Andhra Pradesh’s Nellore district and Donja in Maharashtra’s Osmanabad under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana.

Rekha, too, began utilising her MPLAD funds. She donated Rs 3.03 crore for the construction of the Chhatrapati Shahu Maharaj school in Kasarwadi in Pune's Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation in 2018.

She also helped build a school in Rae Bareli, Sonia Gandhi's Lok Sabha constituency, contributing Rs 2.5 crore from her funds. Both Tendulkar and Rekha were nominated to the Rajya Sabha by Congress led UPA II.​

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| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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