New Delhi, December 2: (The Hindu): Publicly available data indicates that a number of Ministers had large cash holdings – not including bank deposits – as on March 31, 2016.
However, while India’s population is queuing up in front of banks and ATMs across the country, one hardly sees politicians and ministers doing so, the paper notes in the issue dated December 2.
Data collated by Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative and accessed by The Hindu, reveals that Finance Minister Arun Jaitley topped the list with over Rs. 6,500,000, followed by Shripad Yesso Naik, Minister of State (Independent) with Rs. 2,200,000, Hansraj Ahir, MoS (Home) with a little over Rs. 1,000,000. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has declared cash holdings of Rs. 89,700.
Most of the Ministers, 23 in all, declared that they had under Rs. 200,000 in cash, while 15 held cash in excess of Rs. 250,000.
A number of high profile Ministers, including Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar and Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti have not declared their assets with the PMO.
The Code of Conduct for Ministers stipulates that they must file details of their assets and liabilities with the Prime Minister’s Office annually. Of the 76 currently serving Ministers, only 40 have declared the amount they had in hand.
The data also reveals that not everyone in the government’s roster of Ministers shares the Prime Minister’s enthusiasm for cashless transactions.
(The featured picture at the top of is that the Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley)