A TORY MSP is facing criticism for billing the taxpayer almost £3000 for “vanity” photographs amid the cost of living crisis.

Sandesh Gulhane got the public to foot the bill for images of him walking around Glasgow, although the pictures are no longer available online, the Daily Record reports.

According to the MSP expenses register, the MSP billed the public purse a total of £2600 in “professional charges”.

The Tories have said that the pictures were for newsletters and correspondence with constituents.

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However, SNP MSP Emma Harper told the Record: “It’s ridiculous to argue that this swanky photo-shoot was used to represent Sandesh Gulhane’s constituents. He should repay this ridiculous expense back out of his own pocket.

“MSP expenses must be used explicitly to support them in their role – spending £2600 on fancy photos does not meet this requirement.

“Sandesh Gulhane (below) should also apologise to his constituents and the Scottish Parliament at the earliest opportunity.”

The National: The Tory MSP challenged the report online

Another Holyrood source told the newspaper they knew Gulhane was “vain” but that “this is taking it to a new level”.

“He looks like he is running for the US presidency. I would like to hear his justification for expensive professional photography when his constituents are struggling to heat their homes,” they said.

“Vanity pictures are a questionable expense.”

The Record also reports that it was not given permission to use the images, and that they vanished from the CDF Images website.

Colin Fisher of CDF Images said he was unable to discuss clients while a spokesperson for the Scottish Parliament said: “Members are able to claim for photography costs to help with advertising surgery meetings, newsletters and other legitimate parliamentary activities.

“The expenses scheme requires that the member must ensure any claim represents value for money.

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“For transparency and confidence in the scheme, details of all MSPs claims are published online.”

Meanwhile, Gulhane said: “These costs are for communications with Glasgow constituents now and in the future.”