The third phase of elections in Jharkhand will witness 26% candidates facing criminal charges and 21% crorepatis in the fray. Altogether, 72 candidates would try their luck from four constituencies — Rajmahal, Dumka, Godda and Dhanbad - that will go to polls on April 24.
Out of the total number of candidates, 19 are facing criminal cases. Out of them, 14 have serious criminal cases lodged against them and these include murder, attempt to murder and criminal intimidation.
This is according to the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and Jharkhand Election Watch (JEW). ADR and JEW have analysed the affidavits of the candidates already uploaded on the website of the Election Commission of India.
Of the four constituencies, Dhanbad has the highest number of candidates with criminal cases against them. Out of 31 candidates in the fray from here, nine are facing criminal charges. JVM(P) candidate from Dhanbad Samresh Singh is leading the list with 15 criminal cases lodged against him. Candidates of Marxist Coordination Committee (MCC), Trinamool Congress, Bahujan Samaj Party and BJP, besides four independents from Dhanbad constituency, have also been charged with criminal cases, according to the analysis.
Godda comes second where six candidates belonging to BJP, Congress, Bahujan Mukti Party, CPI(ML), JVM(P) and Samata Party have been charged with criminal cases.
Altogether, 16 candidates are contesting the elections from the constituency. Three candidates out of 11 in Rajmahal and one candidate out of 14 in Dumka are facing criminal charges.
“All information relating to criminal cases or financial backgrounds were provided by the candidates themselves in their affidavits for the Lok Sabha elections. We have compiled the details so that people can take a look at their candidates properly,” Anil Verma, the head of ADR, said.
There are 15 crorepati candidates in the fray from four constituencies. BJP has fielded crorepatis on three seats - Dhanbad, Rajmahal and Godda. BJP candidate from Godda Nishikant Dubey is the richest candidate in the third phase of elections. Dubey declared that his total assets are worth `15.56 crore. JMM supremo Sibu Soren, who is contesting from Dumka Lok Sabha seat, is the second richest candidate. Soren’s total asset is worth R4.67 crore. Congress has fielded a crorepati candidate, Furkan Ansari, from Godda.
However, most political parties have not shown any interest in fielding women candidates. Out of 72 candidates, there are six women in the fray. CPI(ML) has fielded two women candidates, CPI one and AJSU one on these four seats.