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30.12.2019
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Jharkhand’s newly sworn-in Cabinet on December 29 decided to convene a three-day session of the Legislative Assembly starting January 6.

The decision came on the day Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) Working President Hemant Soren took oath as the state’s 11th Chief Minister after having won the Assembly polls on December 24.

The JMM-Congress-Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) alliance stormed to power in the state, defeating Raghubar Das-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the five-phase state election. Hemant Soren’s JMM won 30 seats. Congress and RJD won 16 and one seat, respectively. BJP, now the main opposition party in the state, won 25 seats. The Assembly has a total of 81 seats.

The newly-elected House has witnessed a sharp fall in the number of young Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs) getting elected. On the other hand, the number of MLAs with declared criminal cases against them has fallen from 68 percent (elected in 2014) to 54 percent now.

Here’s a quick look at the new Legislative Assembly’s composition

Criminal background

According to an analysis by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), 44 out of the 81 newly-elected MLAs have declared criminal cases. The number was 55 among those elected last time.

The ADR report analyses the newly elected MLAs on the basis of financial assets, educational qualification and age. The analysis of all 81 elected MLAs was done on the basis of declarations made by the legislators in their election affidavit.

Of these, 34 MLAs have declared serious cases. Serious cases refer to those related to rape, murder, kidnapping, crimes against women and attempt to murder, among others.

As many as 17 of the 30 JMM MLAs, 12 of 25 BJP MLAs, eight of 16 Congress MLAs, all three Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik) MLAs, one of the two All Jharkhand Students’ Union (AJSU) MLAs and all of the lone MLAs from the RJD, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation, have declared criminal cases against themselves.

Financial background

Of the total 81 MLAs, 56 have declared assets worth over Rs 1 crore making them crorepatis. The number was 41 in 2014.

As many as 22 of the 30 JMM MLAs, 18 of 25 BJP MLAs, nine of 16 Congress MLAs, two of the three JVM(P) MLAs, both All Jharkhand Students’ Union (AJSU) MLAs and two Independent MLAs are crorepatis.

Jharkhand Legislative Assembly: Party-wise crorepati MLA

The average assets of MLAs in the Assembly is Rs 3.9 crore. In 2014, it was Rs 1.8 crore. In fact, 15 MLAs have assets worth over Rs 5 crore. On the other hand, there are three MLAs with declared assets worth less than Rs 10 lakh.

Education, age and gender

As many as 49 of the 81 have declared having an educational qualification of graduate and above. About 30 have declared their educational qualification to be between 8th pass and 12th pass. One has declared being just literate. Another MLA is a diploma holder.

Jharkhand Legislative Assembly: Age

According to analysis by PRS Legislative Research, there were 44 percent graduates in 2014 (39 percent in 2019) and 19 percent post graduates in 2014 (24 percent in 2019).

About 46 MLAs are aged between 25 and 50 years. About 35 are between 51 and 80 years.

Only 10 of the 81 MLAs are women. In 2014, eight were women.

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