New Delhi: Thirty percent of ministers in the Narendra Modi government have declared criminal cases against themselves and 18 percent have declared "serious criminal cases", according to an analysis of their election affidavits.
New Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) talks with his new cabinet ministers Rajnath Singh (2nd L) and Sushma Swaraj (2nd R) during an oath of office ceremony in New Delhi on May 26, 2014.Pic: AFP
National Election Watch (NEW) and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), which analysed affidavits of 44 of the 46 members in the union council of ministers that was sworn in Monday, said in a release that 91 percent of the new ministers were "crorepatis" (multi-millionaires).
It said NEW and ADR had written to Modi May 20 about the "disturbing fact that the newly formed Lok Sabha has a sizeable number of members (112 or 21 percent) facing serious criminal charges".
The two grops also requested Modi to include only clean representatives in his cabinet.
The release said Modi had committed to critically examine MPs with self-declared criminal cases and fast-tracking cases against them during his campaign speeches.
It said that of the 44 ministers analysed, 13 (30 percent) had declared criminal cases against themselves.
"Eight (18 percent) ministers have declared serious criminal cases, including cases related to attempt to murder, communal disharmony, kidnapping, electoral violations etc.," the release said.
Uma Bharti declared a case related to attempt to murder, and a case related to sections on promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion.
She also declared a case related to illegal payments in connection with an election.
Upendra Kushwaha of the Rashtriya Lok Samta Party, and Ram Vilas Paswan of the Lok Janshakti Party have each declared a case related to bribery, the release said.
Gopinath Munde declared a case related to kidnapping or abducting with intent secretly and wrongfully to confine person.
The release said details of Prakash Javadekar and Nirmala Sitharaman were not analysed as they were not members of either house at present.
It said that of 44 ministers analysed, 40 (91 percent) were "crorepatis".
"The average assets per minister is Rs.13.47 crore. Five ministers declared more than Rs.30 crore worth of assets," it said.
Arun Jaitley declared total assets worth Rs.113 crore and Harsimrat Kaur Badal Rs.108 crore. The other ministers with assets above Rs.30 crore include Munde, Maneka Gandhi and Piyush Goyal.