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1-min read

Vehicles Account for Lion's Share of MLAs' Election Expenses

The focus of the legislators during their election campaign seemed to be more on roadshows and rallies as the expenditure on campaign through print and electronic media stood merely at five per cent.

Mayank Mohanti | News18.com

Updated:March 11, 2019, 1:01 PM IST
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Vehicles Account for Lion's Share of MLAs' Election Expenses
Home Minister Rajnath Singh during a road show (File photo: PTI)
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New Delhi: The Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs) of 11 states spent more than 50% of the election expenditure limit, of which 26% was utilised just for campaigning on vehicles, a report said.

An Association for Democratic Reforms analysis on the election expenditure and vote share of 4,087 out of 4,120 sitting MLAs found that the legislators of Kerala, Tripura, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Mizoram, Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Assam and Bihar have spent more than half of their electoral expense.

The focus of the legislators during their election campaign seemed to be more on roadshows and rallies as the expenditure on campaign through print and electronic media stood merely at five per cent.

In 2014, the Election Commission of India revised the election expenditure limit for candidates contesting for Lok/Rajya Sabha and Assembly elections. For larger states, the limit for assembly elections was revised from Rs 16 lakh to Rs 28 lakh, whereas for the smaller states, it was increased from Rs 8 lakh to Rs 20 lakh.

Vote Share

None of the political parties/alliances of political parties forming the government have won with more than 55% of vote share, an analysis among the State which have gone for elections in the last five years (2013-2018) said.

While Arunachal Pradesh has the highest vote share (53.1 per cent), Jharkhand has the lowest (31.2 per cent). Besides Arunachal Pradesh, there are 4 other states namely Gujarat, Tripura, Sikkim and Himachal Pradesh where the political parties/ alliances of political parties forming the government have won with more than 50 per cent of vote share.

Electoral Malpractices

About 33% of MLAs have declared criminal cases registered against them. Out of these 1356 legislators, 128 have declared cases related to electoral malpractices such as bribery (171E), undue influence or personation at an election (171F and 171 C), illegal payments in connection with elections (171 H) etc.

Seventy-four per cent (95 out of 128 MLAs) of them have won with more than 40% vote share. 23 of such MLAs even have murder charges registered against them.

Bihar has the highest number of MLAs i.e. 38 who have declared cases related to electoral malpractices, followed by 20 MLAs from Karnataka and 18 MLAs from Uttar Pradesh.

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