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Corruption pan-India: With average asset of Rs 8.59 crores, 34 percent State Assembly Ministers also have criminal cases against them

An analysis of Council of Ministers from 29 State Assemblies and 2 Union Territories of India

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Representational Image. Image source: athavaneng.com

“If you are born into a world ruled by corruption- What would you do?” says a documentary on Kiran Bedi, Yes Madam, Sir. The line raises many questions on our mind, that how corruption has become a part of normal life. This is more of a black patch in the society that has a terrible impact on the economy as well as causes huge social instability and riots at times. But, as they say, be the change you want to see- here are two organisations, fighting the oddities related to political reforms to make India ‘clean’, in the true sense of the term.

Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) & National Election Watch (NEW) recently analysed the self-sworn affidavits of current Ministers in State Assemblies and Union Territories across India.  A total of 609 Ministers out of 620 have been analysed across 29 State Assemblies and 2 Union Territories.

Please find below a detailed summary of the survey that was released by Association for Democratic Reform’s Website on August 5, 2016:

 CRIMINAL CASES:

  • Ministers with Criminal Cases: Out of the 609 ministers analysed from state assemblies, 210 (34%) ministers have declared criminal cases against themselves. Out of the 78 Union council of ministers analysed, 24 (31%) have declared criminal cases against themselves.
  • Ministers with Serious Criminal Cases: 113 (19%) ministers from State assemblies have declared serious criminal cases including cases related to murder, attempt to murder, kidnapping, crimes against women etc. Out of the 78 ministers analysed from the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, 14 (18%) have declared serious criminal cases against themselves.

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  • State Wise- Highest Percentage of Ministers with Serious Criminal Cases: 9 (82%) out of 11 ministers from Jharkhand, 4 (57%) out of 7 ministers from Delhi, 9 (53%) out of 17 ministers from Telangana, 18 (46%) out of 39 ministers from Maharashtra, 11(39%) out of 28 ministers from Bihar, and 2 (25%) out of 8 ministers from Uttarakhand have declared serious criminal cases against themselves in their self-sworn affidavits.

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  • Ministers with Charges related to Murder 7 ministers from State Assemblies have declared cases related to murder (Indian Penal Code Section-302).
  • Ministers with Charges related to Communal Violence: 6 ministers have declared cases related to communal violence.(Indian Penal Code Sections-153A, 295 and 295A).

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FINANCIAL ASSETS:

  • Average Assets of Ministers: The average of assets per minister from state assemblies is Rs 8.59 Crores.  As compared to this, the average assets of the Union Council of Ministers are Rs 12.94 Crores.

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  • Average Assets of Ministers with declared criminal cases from State Assemblies vs Average Assets of Ministers with no Criminal Cases: The average assets of Ministers with declared criminal cases is Rs 9.52 Crores. As compared to this, the average assets of ministers with no criminal cases are Rs 8.10 Crores.
  • States with Highest Average Assets of Ministers: The state with the highest average assets per minister is Andhra Pradesh(20 ministers) with average assets of Rs 45.49 crores, followed by Karnataka (31 ministers) with average assets of Rs 36.96 crores and Arunachal Pradesh (7 ministers) with average assets of Rs 32.62 crores.

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GENDER BIASES:

  • Gender details of Ministers: Out of 609 ministers, 51 (8%) ministers are women. The highest number of women ministers are from Madhya Pradesh 5(17%) followed by Tamil Nadu with 5(15%).

*Some ministers may be exempted from filing Income Tax Returns.

  • Ministers who have not declared ITR:  Out of 609 ministers analyzed, 134 ministers (22%) have declared that they did not file Income Tax Returns.
  • States with Highest Percentage of Crorepati Ministers: All State Council of Ministers analyzed from Arunachal Pradesh, Punjab and Puducherry are 100% crorepatis. They are followed by 97% of ministers of Karnataka and 92 % of ministers from Rajasthan, Goa, Meghalaya and Chhattisgarh who have also declared assets valued at Rs 1 crore and above. 
  • Crorepati Ministers: Out of the 609 ministers analysed from State Assemblies, 462 (76%) are crorepatis.
  • States with Lowest Average Assets of Ministers: The state with the lowest average assets of ministers is Tripura (12 ministers) with average assets of Rs 31.67 lakhs, followed by Kerala (19 ministers) with average assets of Rs 78.72 lakhs andManipur (11 ministers) with average assets of Rs 83.92 lakhs.
  • It is to be noted that there are no women ministers in Arunachal Pradesh, Delhi, Mizoram, Nagaland, Puducherry, Punjab, and Telangana Assemblies.

 

Education
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The Pie chart reveals the literacy rate among the number of ministers analyzed. Source: ADR
Age
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Graph showing the age group of ministers. Source: ADR

Established in 1999, Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) aims to improve governance and strengthen democracy by continuous work in the area of electoral and political Reforms. Removing corruption and decriminalizing the political process is one of the principal focus of the organisation.

On the other hand, National Election Watch (NEW) is a coalition of civil society organizations that began operations surrounding the 1997 Sierra Leonean Presidential elections. Their main objectives are: Observing not only the polling day but the entire electoral process, deploying an Observer in every polling station and preparing a situational report with appropriate recommendations.

Read the case details of the survey at- www.adrindia.org

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  • AJ Krish

    When is the government going to be free of corruption? If more and more criminals end up being elected, I don’t think there is going to be any change.

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Three Projects Help India to Stop its Share of Water to Pakistan after Pulwama

The waters of the western rivers - the Indus, Jhelum, and Chenab - averaging around 135 MAF, were allocated to Pakistan.

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Picture Courtesy:-www.economylead.com

The government has envisaged three projects to give intent to its decision to stop its share of water from three eastern rivers of the Indus system – the Beas, Ravi and Sutlej – from going to Pakistan.

The decision was affirmed by Water Resource Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday in the wake of Pulwama terror attack though the Union cabinet had approved implementation of one of the key projects – Shahpurkandi dam – in December last year.

The waters of the western rivers – the Indus, Jhelum, and Chenab – averaging around 135 MAF, were allocated to Pakistan except for “specified domestic, non-consumptive and agricultural use permitted to India”, according to a treaty.

India has also been given the right to generate hydroelectricity through run-of-the-river (RoR) projects on the western rivers which, subject to specific criteria for design and operation, is unrestricted.

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However, about 2 MAF of water annually from Ravi is reported to be still flowing unutilised to Pakistan. VOA

To utilise the waters of the Eastern rivers, India has constructed the Bhakra Dam on Satluj, Pong and Pandoh Dam on Beas and Thein (Ranjitsagar) on Ravi. These storage works, together with other works like Beas-Sutlej Link, Madhopur-Beas Link and Indira Gandhi Nahar Project have helped India utilise nearly the entire share (95 per cent) of the eastern river waters.

However, about 2 MAF of water annually from Ravi is reported to be still flowing unutilised to Pakistan. The other two projects are Ujh multipurpose project and the second Ravi Beas link below Ujh.

Here’s the reality check of the three projects:

Shahpurkandi Project: It aims to utilise the waters coming from powerhouse of Thein dam in order to irrigate 37,000 hectares of land in Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab by generating 206 MW of power.

The project was scheduled to be completed by September 2016. However, following a dispute between the two states, work was suspended in August 2014 but they reached an agreement last September and the construction work has now resumed with the Centre monitoring its progress. The central government had in December last year announced assistance of Rs 485 crore for the project and it would be completed by June 2022.

 

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The decision was affirmed by Water Resource Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday in the wake of Pulwama terror attack. VOA

The project will create irrigation potential of 5,000 hectare in Punjab and 32,173 hectare in Jammu and Kashmir.

Officials said that some water of the Ravi is going waste through the Madhopur Headworks downstream to Pakistan and it is required in Punjab and Jammu and Kashmir.

The total balance cost of pending work in ShahpurKandi Dam project is estimated Rs 1,973.53 crore (irrigation component: Rs 564.63 crore, power component Rs1408.90 crore).

The Shahpurkandi Project was initially approved by the Planning Commission in November, 2001. Revised costs were approved, but there was delay in its execution both because of lack of funds with Punjab and inter-state issues with Jammu and Kashmir.

An agreement was finally reached between the two states under the aegis of Water Resources Ministry in September last year.

Ujh multipurpose project: Construction of the Ujh multipurpose project will create a storage of about 781 million cubic metres of water on Ujh, a tributary of Ravi, for irrigation and power generation and provide a total irrigation benefits of 31,380 hectares in Kathua, Hiranagar and Samba districts of Jammu and Kashmir.

The total estimated cost of the project is Rs 5,850 crore and the Central assistance of Rs 4,892.47 crore on works portion of irrigation component as well as the special grant is under consideration. The project is yet to be implemented and it will take about six years for completion.

Second Ravi Beas link below Ujh: The project has been planned to tap excess water flowing down to Pakistan through Ravi by constructing a barrage across it for diverting water through a tunnel link to the Beas basin.

The project is expected to utilise about 0.58 MAF of surplus waters below Ujh dam by diverting the same to the Beas basin.