A report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) showed that 47, or 26 per cent, of the 182 MLAs who won in the 2017 Gujarat assembly elections have criminal cases against them. This number has dipped from the 2012 elections, when 57 MLAs had criminal cases against them, which was 31 per cent of the total number of legislators.However, the number of MLAs facing serious criminal charges such as murder, attempt to murder, dacoity and robbery is 33 this time, which is more than that compared to the 2012 election. his forms 18 per cent of the total 182 MLAs, compared to 24 MLAs (13 per cent) in 2012.The Gujarat Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) together analysed the self-sworn affidavits of the 182 winning candidates on the bases of criminal background, finances, education and gender. Their other findings are as follows.Out of 47 MLAs with criminal background who won this time,18 are of BJP, 25 of Congress, 1 of Bhartiya Tribal Party, 1 of NCP and 2 are Independents. Two MLAs, Maheshbhai Chottubhai Vasava of Bhartiya Tribal Party and Bhaveshbhai Babubhai of Congress, face cases related to murder.Six MLAs had cases related to attempt to murder and Ahir Bharwad Jethabhai Ghelabhai of BJP had a case related to rape against him.Financial backgroundOut of the 182 MLAs in the Gujarat assembly this time, 141 are crorepatis, while in 2012 elections, 134 were crorepatis. Out of 182 MLAs, the wealth of 33 is Rs 10 crore or above, and that of 23 is between Rs 5 crore and Rs 10 crore.Another 85 legislators have declared wealth between Rs 1 crore and Rs 5 crore, 37 have asserted it to be between Rs 20 lakh and Rs 1 crore , and four have sworn that it is less than Rs 20 lakh.If we look at the party-wise list of crorepati MLAs, BJP has 84 crorepati legislators of the total 99 who have won, while in Congress, 54 out of the 77 winning MLAs are crorepatis; two from Bhartiya Tribal Party and one from NCP declared assets valued over Rs 1 crore.The top three MLAs with high assets are BJP’s Saurabh Patel of Botad constituency, followed by the party’s Dhanjibhai Patel of Wadhwan constituency, and Congressman Jawahar Chavda of Manavadar constituency. The MLAs with the least assets are Jigneshkumar Natvarlal Mevani of Vadgam constituency and Arjunsinh Chauhan of Mehmedabad constituency.EducationOf the 182 MLAs, 96 have education qualifications ranging between Std V and Std XII, while only 69 are graduates and beyond. There are seven MLAs who have declared themselves as literates while one is unlettered.
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