Source: 
The Statesman
https://www.thestatesman.com/bengal/1st-phase-16-out-of-37-candidates-qualified-between-class-viii-xii-1503290118.html
Author: 
SUBHENDU MAIT
Date: 
14.04.2024
City: 
Kolkata

Educational qualifications of 16 out of 37 candidates contesting in the three Lok Sabha (LS) seats of Cooch Behar, Japaiguri and Alipurduar in the first phase, range between Class VIII and XII.

Educational qualifications of 16 out of 37 candidates contesting in the three Lok Sabha (LS) seats of Cooch Behar, Japaiguri and Alipurduar in the first phase, range between Class VIII and XII.

Three constituencies in north Bengal will go for elections on 19 April.

Besides educational qualifications of the 37 contestants, there has been a phenomenal growth of assets of Dr Jayanta Roy, outgoing BJP MP, who has been nominated again from the Jalpaiguri constituency. His total assets during 2019 were of Rs 1.16 crore and in 2024, it shot up to Rs 1.93 crore with 67 per cent growth.

With an asset of Rs 3,89,89,468, Debraj Barman, a school teacher nominated by CPM in Jalpaiguri constituency is the richest among the 37 candidates. Trinamul Congress candidate Jagadish Chandra Barma Basunia comes next to his rival Mr Barman. Mr Basunia has assets worth Rs 2,69,07,638.

West Bengal Election Watch along with Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) revealed these facts after thoroughly analyzing educational qualifications, assets (immovable and movable) and pending criminal cases declared by contesting candidates each before the Election Commission of India (ECI).

Candidates must have to declare their personal details while filing nominations in elections.

“Educational qualifications of 40 per cent candidates fielded by different political parties in CB, Jalpaiguri and Alipurduar are between Class VIII and XII, while 54 per cent contestants are graduates or postgraduates. For instance, seven candidates are Madhyamik pass-outs,” Dr Ujjaini Halim of ADR told The Statesman.

In terms of criminal cases pending against candidates Nisith Pramanik, Union minister of state for home and outgoing BJP MP, contesting again from the same seat, has the highest number, allegedly 26 criminal cases, under different Sections 506, 326,379, 411, 307, 354 etc of the IPC.

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