Hindustan Times
New Delhi

A large majority of parliamentarians cutting across party lines in the Rajya Sabha have assets of at least 1 crore and nearly a third of them face criminal charges, a study by the Association for Democratic Reforms and National Election Watch has found after analysing publicly available documents.

As many as 71 MPs face criminal charges, according to the affidavits submitted by them, the study found, and 37 have declared serious criminal charges. To be sure, some of the criminal cases against politicians, across political lines, are politically motivated.

Two MPs face charges of murder and four MPs have charges of attempts to murder. Four other MPs have declared cases related to crime against women, the study revealed.

The non-profits looked at the financial, criminal and other background details of 226 members of the Rajya Sabha. One seat is vacant, affidavits of two were not available and four seats from Jammu and Kashmir were undefined, the non-partisan NGOs said.

Out of 71 MPs with declared criminal charges, 20 are from the Bharatiya Janata Party, 12 from Congress, three from the Trinamool Congress, five from the Rashtriya Janata Dal, four from the Communist Party of India (Marxist), three from the Aam Aadmi Party, three from the YSR Congress Party, and two from the Nationalist Congress Party.

Out of 37 MPs with declared serious criminal charges, nine are from BJP, 8 from Congress, one from TMC, three from RJD, two from CPI(M), one from AAP, three from YSRCP, and four from NCP.

HT reached out to ADR for a comment but did not get one immediately.

The report also found that 197 Rajya Sabha MPs are worth at least 1 crore . As many as 86 MPs have assets worth at least 10 crore , 34 have assets between 5 crore and 10 crore, and 77 MPs hold assets worth between 1 crore and 5 crore each.

The Congress has the major share of crorepati MPs with 29 out of 31 (the party’s strength in the upper house). They have average assets of 50.09 crore. Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam has nine out of 10, TMC 10 out 13, and BJP 74 out of 85.

Telangana Rashtra Samithi MPs have the highest average assets worth 799.46 crore (the party has seven MPs in the Rajya Sabha). BJP MPs average 27.44 crore each, TMC 4.34 crore, NCP 118.71 crore, AAP 131.66 crore and YSRCP 395.77 crore.

Rajya Sabha MPs are mostly well-educated. As many as 68 are postgraduates, 45 are graduate professionals, 45 are graduates, 32 have doctorates and seven have diplomas, according to the report.

The BJP has 11 MPs with doctorates and 25 postgraduate degrees. Congress has six MPs with doctorates and 14 with postgraduate degrees.

The BJP counts 13 women out of 85 MPs, Congress has five out of 31 and TMC has four out of 13 MPs in the Rajya Sabha, the study found.

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