Gujarat elections: Congress fields most candidates with criminal cases, BJP has more crorepatis, finds ADR
An analysis of affidavits of 923 candidates by ADR shows that Congress has 31 (36%) candidates having criminal cases whereas ruling BJP which has fielded 22 (25%) candidates with criminal record.assembly elections Updated: Dec 01, 2017 22:58 IST
The Congress has more candidates with criminal records than the BJP in 89 seats that is going to polls in the first phase on December 9, says a report of Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) released on Friday.
An analysis of affidavits of 923 candidates by ADR shows that Congress has 31 (36%) candidates having criminal cases whereas ruling BJP which has fielded 22 (25%) candidates with criminal record.
Mayawati’s BSP, which is contesting 60 seats in the first phase, has nominated eight such candidates while the NCP has three nominees with criminal past out of 28.
Bhartiya Tribal Party president and candidate from Dediyapada Mahesh Vasava has a murder case registered against him. He faces as many as 23 cases which include murder, dacoit and robbery. The Congress has given 5 tribal reserved seats to this party, which has tribal stalwart Chhotubhai Vasava as a candidate from Jhagadia.
Chhotubhai, father of Mahesh, left the JD(U) after cross voting for the Congress candidate Ahmed Patel in August Rajya Sabha elections.
The ADR has marked 21 constituencies as sensitive given that each of these seats have minimum three candidates with criminal cases. With seven such candidates, Jamnagar North seat tops the chart.
Representation of Women 6%
ADR’s analysis also reveals that of the total 977 candidates in fray, just over 6% or 57 are women.
BJP in 2014 raised the reservation for women in local body elections from 33 to 50% and at the over 300 local bodies that went to polls in 2015, women’s representation is on par with men. But, the ratio in legislative assembly polls remains quite skewed.
BJP Has Most Crorepatis
The polls will also see 198 crorepati candidates. “The average of assets per candidate is Rs 2.16 crore,” according to the Delhi-based think-tank.
The list of such candidates is topped by the BJP with 76 nominees followed by Congress with 60 and 25 independents.
The Aam Aadmi Party, which has fielded 19 candidates, has six crorepati nominees.
Indranil Rajguru of Congress, who is contesting against chief minister Vijay Rupani from Rajkot West, is the richest candidate with a assets worth over Rs 141 crore.
Also in the fray on this seat is independent candidate Dharmesh Upadhyay, who with Rs 600 declared asset, is among the poorest candidates.
Two more candidates in the Rs100-crore club are former BJP minister Saurabh Patel (Rs 123 crore) and BJP Wadhwan candidate Dhanji Patel (Rs 113 crore).
As many as 127 (14%) candidates have not declared PAN details.
The educational qualification of the candidates does not look promising for ‘Vibrant’ Gujarat.
Majority of the candidates — 580 — have studied only between class 5 and 12 while 23% are graduates, 8% just literates, and 2% illiterates.