The Pioneer

An average of 28 per cent of the candidates contesting in the seventh phase of ongoing Assembly polls have criminal cases against themselves. Similarly, 36 per cent of the candidates are crorepatis.

After analysing the affidavits of 607 of the 613 candidates in the fray from 54 Assembly segments in the seventh and last phase where voting is scheduled on March7, UP Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reform (ADR) said that there were criminal cases against 170 or 28 percent candidates and heinous crime cases against 131 or 22 percent.

Party-wise, 26 of the 45 Samajwadi Party candidates or 58 percent, 26 of the 47 BJP candidates or 44 percent, 20 of the 52 of BSP candidates or 38 percent,  20 of the 54 Congress nominees or 37 percent and 8 of the 47 AAP candidates or 17 percent have declared criminal cases against themselves.

The maximum number of cases (24) are registered against Pragatisheel Manav Samaj Party candidate Vijay Mishra contesting from Gyanpur Assembly seat of Bhadohi in this phase. He is tailed by BSP's Raj Kumar Gautam trying his luck from Ghazipur Assembly seat with 11 cases. Also, Congress candidate Ajay Rai contesting from Pindar Assembly seat of Varanasi has 17 cases.

The ADR report further said that of the 607 candidates in the seventh phase, 217 or 36 percent were crorepatis.  A total of 40 of the 47 BJP candidates or 85 percent, 37 of the 45 SP candidates or 82 percent, 41 of the 52 BSP candidates or 79 percent, 22 of the 54 Congress candidates or 41 percent and 15 of the 47 AAP candidates or 32  percent have declared assets more than Rs.1 crore.

AIMIM candidate Guddu Jamali from Mubarakpur Assembly seat of Azamgarh leads the table with declared assets of Rs 195 crores, and is followed by BSP candidate Babulal from Pindar seat of Varanasi with Rs 44 crores and BSP's Piyush Kumar Singh from Nizamabad Assembly seat of Azamgarh has assets worth Rs 34 crores. The average assets of candidates in the seventh phase of state elections is Rs 2.55 crore. 

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