New Delhi

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi languishes near the bottom of the India Today Group Ranking of India's Best and Worst MPs. 

Among all the Congress MPs, Rahul has the fifth-worst report card and is placed 17th from the bottom in the overall MP rankings. 

These rankings have been compiled by the India Today Group in partnership with two NGOs - the Satark Nagrik Sanghathan (SNS) and the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).

The MP rankings are the first attempt in the country to measure the performance of India's Members of Parliament (MPs) across multiple performance parameters, and are meant to serve as a report card of India's parliamentarians just ahead of the 2014 general elections. 

All through the five years of the 15th Lok Sabha Rahul did not ask a single question in Parliament. He attended only 42.61 per cent of the sittings of the Lok Sabha. 

His attendance record in the standing committees, of which he is a member, is an abysmal 13.64 per cent. 

Rahul has spent only 53.68 per cent of the MPLADS funds allocated to him. 

Even the respondents who were polled by ADR in Amethi have a very poor impression of the development work that has been done in the constituency. 

The Amethi MP has a perception rating of only 5.58 out of 10. 

Former Jharkhand chief minister Madhu Koda - who was an Independent MP from Singhbhum and is facing CBI charges for money laundering and amassing assets disproportionate to his known sources of income -has the worst overall track record as a parliamentarian. 

Right above him is former UP chief minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) stalwart Kalyan Singh who has the second-worst performance rating. 

Other prominent names languishing at the bottom of the India Today MP rankings are AUDF chief Badruddin Ajmal (fourth-worst rating) who's the MP from Dhubri in Assam; and another former Jharkhand chief minister Babulal Marandi (eighth worst rating).

Ranking of 371 MPs

The rankings have been compiled for a total of 371 MPs and do not include report cards of UPA ministers, since ministers are not required to sign attendance records when they enter Parliament and neither do they ask questions. 

The rankings look at the attendance records of MPs, the number of questions asked by them in the Parliament, attendance in standing committees and also the utilisation of the MPLADS funds allocated to the MP. 

In addition to the objective assessment of an MP's parliamentary performance, the rankings also factor in the opinion among voters about the work done in the constituency. 

This data is based on a massive opinion poll conducted by ADR among 250,000 respondents spread across 530 parliamentary constituencies.

An expert panel of crack economists Bibek Debroy, Arvind Virmani, Surjit Bhalla, Ashok Lahiri and Anjali Bhardwaj helped the India Today Group arrive at the coefficient for the MP rankings.

Performance check

At the time of going to press, the field work on performance of MPs from West Bengal had not been completed. MPs from West Bengal are not part of the MP rankings in its first cut. 

One of the key findings of the India Today MP rankings is that most senior leaders cutting across the political spectrum are stacked at the bottom of the rankings, while relatively unknown MPs are taking top honours. 

First-time Shiv Sena MP Gajanan Babar Dharmshi has emerged as India's top-ranking MP as per the India Today rankings. 

An elated Babar told the India Today Group, "I spent all my MPLAD funds and am in constant touch with my constituents. I have regularly attended Parliament. It feels very nice to be recognised for the work done over the last five years. So far, no one was appreciating my efforts even within my party." Babar has a parliamentary performance score of 9 out of 10, and a constituency perception score of 8.40 out of 10.

Report card

Congress MP from Idukki in Kerala PT Thomas is at number two, with a parliamentary performance score of 9 out of 10 and a perception score of 7.12 out of 10. CPI(M) MP A Sampath from Attingal in Kerala is at number 3. 

Among the better known MPs, Anurag Thakur from Hamirpur comes in at number 8 in the overall rankings. Jai Prakash Aggarwal, who is the Congress MP from North East Delhi, has maxed out his parliamentary report card with a perfect 10 on 10. 

Aggarwal has a parliamentary attendance record of 99.42 per cent and asked 835 questions over five years. He spent 84.79 per cent of his MPLAD funds. ggarwal told the India Today Group, "The work of an MP has many dimensions. I submitted over 3,000 questions out of which 830 were accepted by the ballot. I also moved 100 private member Bills, including landmark ones on freedom fighters and on compulsory voting." 

Congress chief Sonia Gandhi featured at 223 out of 371 MPs. Like her son, she too did not ask any question in the Parliament. 

Her overall attendance record in Parliament is 50 per cent, while her attendance in standing committees is 12.49 per cent.

Sonia has spent 65.74 per cent of the MPLAD funds allocated to her. 

Prominent BJP leaders like Shatrughan Sinha, Yashodhra Raje Scindia, Kirti Azad, Shahnawaz Hussain, Lalji Tandon and Maneka Gandhi also feature in the bottom half of the MP rankings.

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