Sugar baron Rana Gurjit Singh, contesting on a Congress ticket from Kapurthala, is the richest candidate in the fray in Punjab.
Singh, who owns distilleries and sugar mills in Uttar Pradesh and Punjab, has, along with his wife, declared movable and immovable assets worth Rs 169.88 crore, which have more doubled from Rs 68.46 crore in 2012. The businessman-turned-politician, who is a matriculate from Dagshai Public School in Himachal Pradesh, has topped the list of 1,941 candidates, including powerful politicians, businessmen, realtors and even a jailed liquor baron, for 117 seats in the state.
Murder accused Shiv Lal Doda is second richest in a list of Punjab’s 10 wealthiest candidates prepared by Hindustan Times after gleaning the affidavits submitted by the contestants with their nomination papers to the poll authorities in the past one week.
Doda, accused in the ghastly murder of a Dalit youth in December 2015, has declared assets worth Rs 141.85 crore. The liquor contractor, who put ‘under matric’ in the education column, is presently lodged in Amritsar jail and contesting as an Independent candidate from Abohar.
The rich-list also features Congress MLA Karan Kaur, who was the wealthiest candidate in 2012, and SAD chief and deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal whose riches have become a talking point in the state polls with the rival parties, especially the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), letting go of no opportunity to hit out at growing businesses. The AAP also has its own set of crorepati candidates - two of them figure among the wealthiest in the fray.