New Delhi: As many as 142 -- or 58 percent -- of the newly-elected 243 Bihar legislators have criminal cases registered against them and 162 MLAs of the total are crorepatis or multi-millionaires, according to a watchdog.
Of the total assembly members with criminal background, 98 (40 percent) have serious charges including murder, attempt to murder, kidnapping and crimes against women, says the Bihar Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).
Charges have been framed against 70 members with criminal background, it said.
"Out of the 142 MLAs who have declared pending criminal cases against them, 70 (49 percent) have declared that the charges for these cases have already been framed by the court of law," the study said.
Eleven legislators have cases related to murder and attempt to murder. Of these, four are from the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD).
In 2010, of 228 legislators analysed, 76 (33 percent) had serious criminal cases against them, it said.
The analysis also said that of the 243 newly elected Bihar legislative assembly members, 162 are crorepatis or multi-millionaires.
"A total of 67 percent of elected representatives in the Bihar assembly of this year are crorepatis, whereas out of 228 MLAs analysed during the 2010 Bihar assembly elections, 45 legislators, which amounts to 20 percent, were crorepatis," ADR and Bihar Election Watch analysis showed.
Of the 162, 14 legislators have assets of over Rs.10 crore, according to the study of the affidavits of the 243 newly-elected legislators.
Khagaria's Janata Dal-United legislator Poonam Devi Yadav is the richest, with assets of value around Rs.41 crore.
Bhagalpur's Congress legislator Ajeet Sharma is the second richest with assets of Rs.40 crore, while Mokama's Independent legislator Anant Kumar Singh is the third richest candidate.
As many as 51 out of 80 MLAs from the RJD, 53 out of 71 MLAs from the JD-U, 32 out of 53 MLAs from the BJP, 19 out of 27 MLAs from the Congress, one of the two MLAs of the RLSP, and both members from the LJP are crorepatis.
Raniganj's JD-U legislator Achmit Rishidev has the lowest assets worth Rs.9.8 lakh while Darauli's CPI-MLL legislator Satyadev Ram was at the second-last position on the list.
The average assets of legislators were Rs.3.02 crore, whereas the average assets for each candidate who contested were Rs.1.44 crore.
In 2010, the average assets from among the 228 MLAs analysed were Rs.82.46 lakh, the ADR said.