The Times of India

GUWAHATI: A study revealed that 16 per cent of the 126 MLAs in the house this year have never filed their income tax (I-T) returns.

On top of that, nine of them have not even given their PAN details, according to a report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch (NEW), a nationwide campaign comprising more than 1,200 NGOs and other citizen-led organizations.

"Among the 20 MLAs who have never filed returns, Bidyasing Engleng of Indian National Congress has the maximum assets, worth approximately Rs 2.77 crore, followed by Khorsing Engti of the same party from Howraghat constituency with assets worth over Rs 1 crore," said Tasaduk Ariful Hussain, NEW coordinator for Assam, adding that the report reveals the wrongdoings of the lawmakers.

Among the rest, Govinda Chandra Langthasa, Pallab Lochan Das, Arun Phukan, Kripanath Mallah, Monilal Gowala, Siddeque Ahmed, Mansing Rongpi etc are some of the prominent names of the winning Congress to feature in the list who do not file their income tax returns.

In fact, some of them have not even given their PAN details as exposed by the report, which is based on the analysis of the information provided in their self-sworn affidavits.

Ten from Congress, eight from AIUDF and two MLAs from BPF have not filed their IT returns.

While, Pradip Kumar Brahma of BPF from Kokrajhar West constituency was at the top with the highest income shown in their Income Tax returns, which includes the income shown by their spouse and dependents. Hitesh Basumatary, another BPF man, followed him in the list

The state chapter of the NEW further demanded that income tax files and asset growth of MLAs should be investigated by the appropriate authority and action should be taken on defaulters.

"This is totally wrong and illegal. The concerned authority should take immediate measures on such things," said Hussain.

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