Hindustan Times
Vijay Swaroop

The self-sworn affidavits of these ministers and other details were analysed after cabinet reconstitution on Tuesday

Over 70% of the newly sworn-in ministers are facing criminal cases, a report of the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and Election Watch stated on Wednesday.

Out of the 32 ministers whose criminal, financial, educational details furnished in their election affidavits were analysed by the ADR, 23 (about 72%) have criminal cases pending against them.

The self-sworn affidavits of these ministers and other details were analysed after cabinet reconstitution on Tuesday.

Ashok Chaudhary, a nominated minister of JD(U) was not required to submit his affidavit, hence his information on criminal, financial and other details were not available in the public domain.

According to the affidavits analysed, 17 (53%) ministers face serious criminal cases against them.

Party wise, out of 17 RJD ministers, 15 (88%) have declared criminal cases while 11 (65%) have serious criminal cases against them.

In comparison, only four (36%) of the 11 ministers have criminal cases against them while 3 (27%) have self-declared serious criminal cases against them, whereas of the two Congress ministers sworn-in, both have criminal cases while one is facing serious criminal cases.

A serious criminal case is the offence for which maximum punishment is of 5 years or more; if an offence is non-bailable; if it is an electoral offence or offence related to loss to exchequer; Offences that are assault, murder, kidnap, rape related; offences that are mentioned in Representation of the People Act (Section 8); offences under Prevention of Corruption Act and crimes against women.

The earlier NDA ministry headed by Nitish Kumar, 18 out of 31 ministers had criminal cases registered against them, according to ADR and Election Watch report based on affidavits of 28 of them.

As many as 14 of the ministers faced serious criminal cases.

Out of the 32 GA-2 ministers, 8 (25%) ministers have declared their educational qualification to be between class 8 and 12 while 24 (75%) ministers have declared having an educational qualification of graduate or above.

The lowest qualification is held by deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav, who has declared his educational qulaification as that of class 8. Tejashwi, incidentally is holding four portfolios (health, road construction, urban development and housing and rural works), while his elder brother, Tej Pratap Yadav is a class 12 passout.

There are seven ministers who have studied till class 12, seven are graduates, five are graduate professionals, 10 are post-graduates and two hold doctorate degrees.

The average assets of 32 ministers analysed is 5.82crore. Out of 17 RJD ministers, 16 (94%) are crorepatis, whereas 9 out of 11 JD (U) ministers (82%) are crorepatis.

The minister with the highest declared total assets is Samir Kumar Mahaseth (RJD) from Madhubani constituency with assets worth 24.45crore while Murari Prasad Gautam (Cong) from Chenari (SC) constituency has the lowest assets worth 17.66lakh.

A total of 23 (72%) ministers have declared liabilities out of which the minister with the highest liabilities is Lalit Kumar Yadav (RJD) of Darbhanga Rural constituency with 2.35crore of liabilities.

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