Kolkata, May 9 UNI | 3 months ago

A shocking 14 per cent candidates of the total 187 political nominees, who are seeking people's mandate in the remaining 17 Lok Sabha seats for last phase poll on May 12 in Bengal have criminal cases pending, election documents revealed.

The rights activists of the West Bengal Election Watch (WBEW), who analysed, compiled the self-sworn affidavits of the contesting candidates and distributed to the media for voters awareness, rued that not even a single political party finds clean 42 candidates for all Lok Sabha seats of the state.

In four previous polls on April 17 (4 seats), 24(6 seats), and 30(9 seats) and May 7 (6 seats) had also candidates with criminals cases, including murder charges.

However, for the last of the five-phase poll in the state, the WBEW after scrutinising the self-sworn affidavits of 187 candidates found 26 candidates have criminal cases for the seats of Baharampur, Krishnanagar, Ranaghat, Bangaon, Barrackpur, Dum Dum, Barasat, Bashirhat, Joynagar, Mathurapur, Diamong Harbour, Jadavpur, Kolkata (South), Kolkata (North), Tamluk, Kanthi and Ghatal spreading in six districts.

Of the 26 candidates having criminal cases, 15 aspirants have cases with serious nature like murder, attempt to murder, theft, and kidnapping. Party wise candidates with criminal cases Congress party has 3, BJP 6, All India Trinamool Congress has 5, 1 from BSP, and 4 from CPI(M).

Party wise candidates with serious criminal cases Congress has 2, 5 from BJP, 3 from AITC, 1 from BSP and 2 from CPI(M).

Candidate with cases related to murder is WBPCC chief Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury from Baharampur constituency. Candidates with cases related to crimes against women seeking public mandate are P C Sorkar (Junior) from Barasat constituency of BJP, Rahul (Biswajit) Sinha of BJP from Kolkata Uttar constituency and Dhananjoy Mitra of INC from Dum Dum constituency.

There are three red alert constituencies - Kolkata (North), Tamluk and Basirhat, as they have at least three candidates each with declared criminal cases against them. There are also many crorepaties wooing the poor voters to be a lawmaker in the 16th Parliament to be constituted after May 16.

There are 41 crorepati candidates out of 187 seeking their fate for May 12 poll.

While the AITC has maximum number of millionaires 12, 7 from BJP, 4 from CPI(M), 4 from INC and 2 from AAP.

Average assets per candidate contesting poll is Rs 22.34 crore, because Shamali Das, an independent contestant from Jadavpur and Kolkata South has declared assets of worth over Rs 2,000 crore, the richest followed by Trinamool's Dev who possesses properties in excess of Rs 15 crore.

(Posted on 09-05-2014)