AAP harps on clean image, but many of its MLAs face criminal cases

AAP’s recent clean sweep in Delhi is credited to its redoubtable poster boy Arvind Kejriwal after the party decided to invoke his image as a ‘Common Man CM’ with developmental agenda. However, an analysis of self declared affidavits of elected MLAs in Assembly election 2020 shows that at least 43 MLAs have criminal cases pending against them. A report by Sunny Sharma

The number of elected Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislators involved in criminal activities is more than their number recorded in 2015 election to Delhi Assembly election. The Delhi Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) have analyzed the self-sworn affidavits of all 70 newly elected MLAs in the Delhi 2020 Assembly Elections and found that instead of criminals in politics coming down, it is the other way round.

Out of the 70 MLAs analysed in 2020, 43(61 per cent) MLAs have declared criminal cases against themselves. Out of 70 MLAs analysed during Delhi Assembly elections in 2015, 24(34 per cent) MLAs had declared criminal cases against themselves. As many as 37 (53 per cent) MLAs have declared serious criminal cases including cases related to rape, attempt to murder, crimes against women etc. Nine MLAs have declared convicted cases against themselves while one MLA has declared case of attempt to murder (IPC Section-307).

There are 13 MLAs have declared cases related to crimes against women. Out of these 13 MLAs, one MLA has declared cases related to rape (IPC Section-376). When it comes to party wise MLAs with criminal cases, 38 (61 per cent) out of 62 MLAs from AAP and 5(63 per cent) out of 8 MLAs from BJP have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits. Now coming to party wise MLAs with serious criminal cases, 33 (53 per cent) out of 62 MLAs from AAP and 4(50 per cent) out of 8 MLAs from BJP have declared serious criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits. AAP is the party that banked on the CM’s image as a corruption crusader to turn the tide of public sentiment back in its favour.

The AAP workers had fanned out across the constituencies and reminded the voters of Kejriwal’s reputation as an ‘Outsider’, who scripted a glory run to the hustings with his call for clean politics and governance. Separate teams had been put together to hard-sell the CM’s image as a corruption-fighting, educated and nationalist chief minister, who changed the lives of Delhiites. There was focus on raising general awareness on the government’s recent moves to waive pending water bills and make 200 units of electricity free of charge, as well as reforms in the key sectors of health and education.

Prashant’s tweet

After the win, political strategist Prashant Kishor who devised the party’s campaign, thanked the voters of Delhi and in a tweet said, “Thank you Delhi for standing up to protect the soul of India”.

Assets of MLAs

There are crorepati MLAs in Delhi.  Out of the 70 MLAs analysed, 52 (74 per cent) are crorepatis. Out of 70 MLAs analyzed during Delhi 2015 assembly elections, 44 (63 per cent) MLAs were crorepatis. As far as party wise croreparti MLAs are concerned, 45 (73 per cent) out of 62 from AAP and 7 (88 per cent) out of 8 MLAs from BJP MLAs have declared assets worth more than 1 crore.

The average of assets per MLA in the Delhi Assembly Elections 2020 is 14.29 Crore. The average assets per MLA in the Delhi Assembly Elections 2015 was 6.29 crores. The party wise average assets also make interesting reading. Among major parties, the average assets per MLAs for 62 AAP MLAs is 14.96 crores and 8 BJP MLAs have average assets worth 9.10 crores. Dharampal Lakra from Mundka constituency representing AAP tops the chart when it comes to assets. He has imoveable assets worth 288 crores and immovable assets of 3.37 crores.

Pramila Tokas from R.K.Puram constituency representing AAP has declared immovable assets of 64.69 crores and movable assets of 16.19 crores. Similarly, Raj Kumar Anand of AAP who won from Patel Nagar constituency has immovable assets worth 60.09 crores and movable assets of 18.81 crores.

Other parameters

While coming to other background details, the details of education, age and gender details, 23 MLAs or 33 per cent, have declared their educational qualification to be between 8th pass and 12th pass, while 42 (60 per cent)MLAs have declared having an educational qualification of graduate and above and 5 MLAs have declared Diploma. 

About age, 39 (56 per cent) MLAs have declared their age to be between 25 and 50 years while 31 (44 per cent) MLAs have declared their age to be between 51 and 80 years. As for as gender details are concerned, out of 70 MLAs, 8 (11 per cent) MLAs are women. In 2015, out of 70 MLAs, 6 (9 per cent) MLAs were women.

The comparative analysis of assets of re-elected MLAs shows that the assets have risen in 2020 as compared to 2015. The number of re-elected MLAs analysed in the Delhi assembly elections of 2020 is 45. The average assets of re-elected MLAs in 2015 was 7.93 crores. In comparison, the average assets of re-elected MLAs in 2020 are 8.93 crores. The growth in average assets of re-elected MLAs is 1 crore  that is by 13 per cent.

There is no doubt that though AAP has created ripples in the political circle with making a hat trick, the fact remains that when it comes to yard sticks like clean image, its MLAs too are involved in criminal cases and have doubtful credentials.

[email protected]