Jewellery, real estate and guns seem to fascinate Bihar’s top leaders, as is revealed in the assets declared by nominees for the April 26 state legislative council polls.
Topping the ‘well-heeled chart’ is former chief minister Rabri Devi whose affidavit suggests she possess movable property worth Rs 1.47 crore and immovable property worth Rs 1.46 crore.
In addition, she has gold jewellery worth Rs 12.84 lakh and a double barrel gun worth Rs 90,000. By way of cash reserves, Rabri has Rs 1.75 lakh. Rabri’s husband and RJD chief Lalu Prasad is not that rich. The former Bihar strongman has ‘only’ Rs 15.29 lakh worth immovable assets and Rs 76.89 lakh in movable assets.
But he, like his wife, possesses a NP bore rifle and a German-make pistol worth a few lakhs of rupees. The former power couple, which used to once possess 300 cows, now has only 65 cows and 37 calves, which are valued at Rs 18.28 lakh.
Incidentally, chief minister Nitish Kumar has only Rs 48,000 as cash in hand and movable assets worth Rs 61.47 lakh, including a flat at Dwarka in New Delhi. Apart from it, Nitish has jewellery worth a few lakhs, including two gold rings and a Santro car worth Rs 2.70 lakh.
Nitish’s son Nishant has Rs 16 lakh in bank and property worth Rs 78 lakh, including land in his ancestral village of Kalyanbigha in Nalanda district. Bihar’s deputy chief minister-cum-finance minister Sushil Kumar Modi is somewhat better off than his boss, Nitish Kumar. He has movable assets worth Rs 24.51 lakh and Rs 60 lakh in immovable assets. Modi’s wife has gold jewellery worth Rs 10.92 lakh and Rs 16.38 lakh in banks.
The leaders have shown they owe big money to financial institutions and friends. Rabri, for instance, owes Rs 75 lakh to one Shreya Construction while Lalu owes Rs 15 lakh to former union minister Prem Gupta and another Rs 25 lakh to his brothers-in-law.Modi’s affidavit says, he has a loan of Rs 25.63 lakh from a nationalised bank and also owes Rs 14.22 lakh to his relatives.
Only 11 candidates have filed their nomination for 11 vacancies being created, 10 of them being from the ruling NDA and RJD’s Rabri Devi being the 11th contestant. With no contest in the offing, all 11 are likely to be declared elected on April 19, the last date for the withdrawal of nomination.