Bihar polls: 59% of new MLAs have a criminal background
TNN, Nov 26, 2010 - The Times of India
NEW DELHI: A cold reality check for the exultant voices from Bihar is hard statistics that show that criminals and money power continue to dominate electoral politics.
A total of 141 out of 241 or 59% newly-elected MLAs have criminal backgrounds according to data analysed by National Election Watch (NEW) and Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR). This is a marked increase from 117 or 35% MLAs with pending criminal cases against them in the 2005 assembly elections.
About 85 MLAs of the 141 analysed have serious criminal charges pending against them, including murder, kidnapping, abduction and illegal payments, in connection with elections as opposed to 68 MLAs with similar charges five years ago.
All parties are equally culpable in giving tickets to representatives with questionable backgrounds, and the figure has gone up as compared to last assembly polls.
For instance, the winning horse JD(U) has 58 out of 114 or 51% legislators with pending criminal cases. This is an increase from 2005 elections when 45% or 39 out of 86 MLAs had criminal background. The number of MLAs with "serious" criminal cases pending cases in 2010 is 38%.
Similarly this time around, BJP has 64% or 58 out of 90 winning candidates with criminal cases against them as compared to 58% in 2005. RJD's record was only marginally better -- with 59% of its legislators boasting criminal cases as compared to 40% in the last polls. LJP that won three seats had a 100% record with police cases against all elected representatives.
A total of 47 MLAs or 20% of the legislators are crorepatis in the Bihar polls. On the contrary, there were only eight crorepatis in 2005.