It’s election time, and here are some interesting facts: out of 1,295 candidates contesting the Lok Sabha elections for 89 seats on April 30, 2014, 222 candidates have declared criminal offences against them and 341 are crorepati candidates. The average assets of candidates are Rs 3.77 crore, according to an analysis by National Election Watch (NEW) and Association For Democratic Reforms (ADR).
NEW and ADR analysed the affidavits of 1,292 candidates out of the 1,295 contesting candidates, and found that Rajesh Ranjan, a.k.a Pappu Yadav, who is contesting from Madhepura constituency in Bihar, has declared 24 cases against himself. Party-wise, 27 out of 81 Congress candidates (33%) have criminal cases against them while 24 out of 68 Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidates (35%) have criminal charges against them.
Let us now look at the financial background. Out of the 1,292 candidates analysed, 341 (26%) are crorepatis. Party-wise, 64 out of 81 Congress candidates (79%) and 51 out of 68 BJP candidates (75%) are crorepatis. 34 out of 68 Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidates (50%) have declared assets of more than Rs 1 crore.
Here is another surprise: the top three candidates with the maximum assets during this phase of the elections are from Andhra Pradesh. And the three candidates are from three different parties: Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS), Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and Congress. Konda Vishweshwar Reddy, TRS candidate from Chevalla, has declared the maximum assets of Rs 528 crore followed by Nama Nageswara Rao, TDP candidate from Khammam with assets of Rs 338 crore and Dr. Gaddam Vivekanand, Congress candidate from Peddapalle with assets of Rs 266 crore.