Indian Express
Shalini Nair , Kavitha Iyer

Mumbai's MLAs have, on an average, grown richer by a mind-boggling 400 per cent over the last five years. A comparison of the total declared assets, then and now, by the 27 MLAs who are contesting the Assembly elections again show an increase in the range of 1.5 to 12 times.

Also, of the 27 MLAs, only 10 had assets worth over a crore in 2004. Five years on, the number has doubled to 21.

The MLAs who with their new-found prosperity have joined the rank of crorepati MLAs include BJP MLA Gopal Shetty, Shiv Sena’s Subhash Desai, MLAs Ashok Jadhav, Naseem Khan, Jagannath Shetty, Kalidas Kolambkar and Annie Shekhar from Congress, Nawab Malik from NCP, MNS’s Bala Nandgaonkar and Bashir Moosa Patel of the NCP, now contesting on a Samajwadi Party ticket,

Bashir Patel, who is contesting from Mumbadevi, has become 12 times more affluent since he was last elected in 2004 with his total assets increasing from Rs 23.24 lakh to Rs 2.84 crore. According to Patel’s 2004 affidavit, neither he nor his family had any vehicles or owned a house. Patel’s family now have two cars, a Honda Civic and an Endeavour and two flats worth Rs 1.34 crore.

Next in the league of prosperous MLAs is Borivli’s Gopal Shetty whose personal wealth has swelled tenfold over the last five years from Rs 11 lakh to Rs 1 crore. In 2004, bank deposits in the Shetty household were nil. He has now declared a total of Rs 12.17 lakh in bank deposits. While their property in 2004 was restricted to Rs 3.5 lakh worth residential premises in a private slum in Borsapada at Kandivli, his wife now owns property worth Rs 81.24 lakh. Shetty’s personal jewellery is worth Rs 2 lakh, up from nil in 2004. His wife owns jewellery worth Rs 5 lakh, up from Rs 1.80 lakh in 2004.

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