Nearly 20 per cent of contestants in the third phase of Lok Sabha election have criminal cases against them, with Kerala topping the list among 13 states, while an AAP nominee has been charged with 28 serious offences.
Besides, nine candidates have murder cases against them while 29 have declared cases of attempt to murder in their affidavits, revealed an analysis released by National Election Watch (NEW) and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) for 14 states where election will be held on April 10.
The analysis based on the affidavits filed by 1391 candidates said BJP outnumbered Congress in giving tickets to candidates with criminal backgrounds for the third phase.
Of the 72 candidates announced by Congress, 21 have declared criminal cases while out of BJP’s 80 candidates, 38 have criminal records.
On the other hand, among the 78 candidates of AAP, 10 are facing “serious criminal cases”, the analysis added.
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As far as the states are concerned, the analysis claimed that 29 per cent candidates in Kerala have criminal cases followed by Bihar (26 per cent) and Chhatisgarh (25 per cent).
The lone Lakshadweep constituency has three out of six candidates have criminal records.
AAP nominee from Odisha has highest criminal cases
Aam Admi Party candidate Narendra Mohanty from Kandhamal Lok Sabha seat has the highest number of 28 criminal cases pending against him among the 98 candidates in the fray for 10 Lok Sabha seats going to polls on April 10 in Odisha.
Mohanty in his affidavit declared 28 cases against him, but he has not been convicted in any of them so far. Of the 28 cases, three are murder, one is attempt to murder and one is dacoity with murder, Ranjan Kumar Mohanty, state coordinator of Odisha Election Watch has said.
A party-wise analysis revealed that 4 out of 10 candidates fielded by BJP, one of 10 candidates from INC, two of 10 of BJD, three of 8 AAP candidates, one of 10 BSP candidates, one candidate of CPI (M) and two of 17 of Independents had criminal cases against them in Odisha.
In the national capital alone, five out of seven BJP candidates in fray in the Lok Sabha elections have criminal cases against them with four of them even facing serious charges like kidnapping, criminal intimidation and extortion.
According to the report of Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) and Delhi Election Watch (DEW) after analysing the self-sworn affidavits of all the 150 candidates who are in fray for the seven Lok Sabha seats in the city, 23 candidates have criminal cases against them while 13 of them are facing serious criminal cases.
BJP’s Maheish Girri has maximum charges
Out of this, Maheish Girri of BJP from East Delhi constituency has declared the highest count of serious IPC charges i.e. four. He is followed by Sunil Chhikara an Independent candidate from North West Delhi Constituency and Mahabal Mishra of Congress from West Delhi Constituency, with three IPC cases each.
“Five (71 per cent) of the seven candidates fielded by BJP, two (29 per cent) candidates each from Congress and BSP out of the seven candidates have criminal charges cases against them,” the report said.
While two (67 per cent) out of three candidates fielded by Shiv Sena (SHS), one (14 per cent) out of the seven candidates of AAP, one candidate each from both Agar Jan Party and Rashtriya Ekta Party and nine (16 per cent) out of 58 Independent candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits, the analysis revealed.
Four out of seven candidates of BJP are facing serious criminal cases. Two out of seven candidates of BSP, two out of three candidates of SHS, one out of seven candidates of Congress and four out of 58 Independent candidates have declared serious criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.
When it comes to crime against women, Mohammad Shakeel Saifi of BSP from East Delhi constituency has declared a case related to assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty (IPC Section-354) and word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman (IPC Section-509).
Other than this, two candidates have declared cases related to kidnapping.
The report further states that two constituencies – North East and West Delhi – have at least three candidates from political parties with declared criminal cases.
(With PTI inputs)