SHILLONG, Feb 22 (PTI): The assets of Meghalaya assembly speaker Metbah Lyngdoh, the richest candidate to fight the assembly elections, increased by 68 per cent to Rs 146.31 crore in the last five years, according to a report.
Lyngdoh, the chief of the United Democratic Party (UDP) who is re-contesting the February 27 polls from the Mairang seat, had declared assets of Rs 87.26 crore in the 2018 assembly elections, according to the report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and Meghalaya Election Watch.
Sixty-eight people were elected to the 60-member Meghalaya assembly in the last five years. Besides the 60 elected in the 2018 elections, eight people were elected in bypolls. The report said it analysed the assets of 61 of these people who are candidates in this election.
The average percentage growth in assets of these 61 re-contesting MLAs is 77 per cent, it said.
Chief minister Conrad K Sangma reported an increase in his assets, from Rs 5.33 crore in 2018 to Rs 14.06 crore — a rise of 164 per cent.
Urban affairs minister Sniawbhalang Dhar had the highest increase in his assets in the last five years at 607 per cent. Dhar, who is re-contesting the election from the Nartiang seat as an NPP candidate, had declared assets of Rs 6 crore in 2018, and it rose to Rs 45 crore, the report said.
The assets of power minister James PK Sangma, who is seeking re-election from Dadenggre constituency, increased by 568 per cent from Rs 7 crore in 2018 to Rs 53 crore in 2023, it said.
The assets of leader of opposition Mukul Sangma and his wife DD Shira, the TMC candidate in Mahendraganj, also rose from Rs 13.59 crore in 2018 to Rs 28.21 crore in 2023, which is an increase of 108 per cent.
Of the 61 candidates analysed for the report, 28 are from NPP, 12 from UDP, 10 from TMC, seven from the BJP, and one MLA each of the Congress and the VPP.