Forty-four of 70-member Uttarakhand assembly, including six ministers, have not submitted details of their moveable and immovable property to the assembly secretariat ever since they were elected in 2012, a Right to Information reply has stated.
Also, 16 members, including chief minister Harish Rawat, have not filed the updated details for the financial year 2014-2015.
Uttarakhand has adopted the Uttar Pradesh Ministers and Legislators (Publication of Assets & Liabilities) Act (1975), which says members of the state assembly are required to submit details of their assets and liabilities within three months after they are elected.
The members also have to provide updated list for the last financial year by June 30.
The RTI reply, received last month and a copy of which is with Hindustan Times, suggests the 10 members who had been following the Act are speaker Govind Kunjwal, deputy speaker AP Maikhuri, Navprabhat, Shailarani Rawat, Amrita Rawat, Sunder Lal, Jeetram, Vijya Barthwal, minister Harak Singh and minister MP Naithani. Those who have not given the details of their properties since 2012-13 belong to both the ruling Congress, opposition BJP and the BSP.
The list includes names of like Dinesh Dhane, Indra Hridyesh, Dinesh Agarwal, Surendra Singh Negi (all ministers) Rajkumar, Harbansh Kapoor, Pranav Singh Champion, Mamta Rakesh, Haridas, Sarita Arya etc.
The 16 MLAs who had not filed assets details for the financial year 2014-15 include bigwigs like chief minister Harish Rawat, former chief minister Vijay Bahuguna, leader of opposition Ajay Bhatt, former BJP minister BS Chupal, UKD MLA and minister Pritam Panwar.
Even as lawmakers debate on ensuring transparency and clean governance, the long list of defaulters in a small assembly like Uttarakhand raises questions on their intentions, say experts.
RTI activist Nadimuddin, on whose application Vidhansabha secretariat gave information, said this was a strange situation where most legislators have no fear for law.
“It has been more than 17 months the state does not have a Lokayukta. No surprise why our lawmakers are less interested for anti-corruption ombudsmen,” Nadimuddin told HT.
BJP and Congress leaders have claimed that they ask their MLA’s to follow rules.
Congress state president Kishor Upadhyay said: “I am sure many members unintentionally slipped (to file assets). I appeal party legislators to follow the procedural norms.”
“Usually elected members carry an impression that they don’t care about rules but we have to change this impression. And I do my bit,” said Shailarani Rawat, Congress MLA from Kedarnath.