Bengaluru: The Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) released a report recently that revealed the details of the income of MLAs (State legislators) in the country. That these MLAs earn in lakhs and crores would not be a problem if the money were not ill-gotten wealth, but several of them have done negligible work for their constituency. And their money might indeed by ill-gotten.

The richest of them all is Congress MLA N Nagaraju, also known as MTB Nagaraj from Karnataka. The Income Tax department had raided his premises last year. The IT officials had discovered that the MLA had an undeclared income of over Rs 120 crore. They even found the then newly printed Rs 2,000 and Rs 100 notes worth Rs 1.1 crore at his residence.

The MLA’s assets have been doubling in the past four years. He has now declared that he has Rs 709 crore worth of assets, along with his wife's assets which are worth another Rs 197 crore, totalling up to Rs 906 crore.

However, none of this money seems to have improved the conditions of Nagaraj’s constituency, Hoskote.

Hoskote is a rural area near Bengaluru where a majority of locals are farmers. The lands in Hoskote are dominantly used for agriculture. However, with the fast development occurring in and around Bengaluru, the agricultural production has taken a beating. According to the National Green Tribunal's observation the borewell yield has drastically reduced from 42 per cent to 35 per cent in just 3 - 5 years. 

Adding to this, the roads filled with potholes do not see any repair or fix, topped with the pollution that the urbanisation brings. Puttaswamy S, farmer and resident of Hoskote told MyNation, "The roads have been left neglected and filled with bumps for the longest time and there has been no improvement to it since the past 12 years that I have been living here." 

Nagaraj is not alone when it comes to the neglect of constituencies. Byrathi Basavaraj, the MLA of Karnataka's KR Puram constituency, has been infamous and remained in the news for his hooliganism in land mafia cases and his followers thrashing a mother and son.

The leader’s constituency has been facing dire scarcity of underground drains and water. The area also faces daily traffic congestion issue, but the MLA in-charge has been missing from the scene when it comes to any of these basic issues that require only minimal efforts and investment. According to Bengaluru's citizen matter s platform, " Many households in this constituency have already paid the BWSSB and got new connections. But water still does not reach most houses here; even those that get water, do not get it regularly. Traffic congestion is also severe along this road, especially near Tin Factory and KR Pura hanging bridge. Street lights are lacking in many areas; poor garbage"clearance and stray dogs are other issues."

The Karnataka regime is marked also by blatant sexual discrimination. Women MLAs earn less than half of what their male counterparts do. According to the ADR analysis, Only 258 (8 per cent) MLAs are women. The report further states that on an average, a male MLA's annual self-income is Rs 25.85 lakh whereas for a female MLA, it is Rs 10.53 lakh. The ADR report peeks into the depth of the pockets of the so-called people’s representatives.