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'31 pc of newly-elected MLAs have criminal cases'

About 48 per cent of newly- elected MLAs of Kerala and 35 per cent of West Bengal have criminal cases pending against them, according to a study.

The analysis by ADR and National Election Watch has found out that 257 MLAs out of 820 (31 per cent) whose poll affidavits were analysed in the new assemblies of Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal have criminal cases against them.

A total of 133 MLAs out of the 257 have declared serious IPC charges like murder, attempt to murder, robbery and extortion in their affidavits. An Assam legislator even has charges of waging war against the government against him.

The West Bengal assembly has the highest number of MLAs with pending criminal cases (102) whereas Puducherry has lowest number of MLAs with pending criminal cases (9).

Percentage-wise, Kerala has 48 per cent MLAs with criminal cases, followed by West Bengal (35 per cent), Puducherry (30 per cent), Tamil Nadu (29 per cent) and Assam (10 per cent).

A total of 268 MLAs (33 per cent of the total number of MLAs analysed) in the new assemblies of Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal are 'crorepatis'. The highest asset is that of Tamil Nadu's A Narayanan (AIADMK) -- Rs 103 crore while the lowest asset is that of West Bengal's Gouranga Chatterjee (CPI-M) -- Rs 36,000.

The analysis looked into poll affidavits of 820 of the 824 newly-elected MLAs. Affidavits of three MLAs of Tamil Nadu and one of West Bengal could not be analysed as these were not on the election commission websites.

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