BHUBANESWAR: Highest 75 per cent candidates from Congress and 50 per cent from BJP in the fray for the first phase Lok Sabha elections in the State have pending criminal cases, finds an analysis by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).

The report, released here on Sunday, indicated leaders nominated by national parties have more criminal charges than their counterparts from regional parties. Four Lok Sabha and 26 Assembly constituencies are going to polls on April 11.

The analysis of affidavits, conducted in collaboration with Odisha Election Watch, found that one CPI(ML) candidate contesting the Lok Sabha election has criminal cases pending while not a single Lok Sabha nominee from BJD has declared any cases pending.

The ADR report, however, clarified that of 189 Assembly nominees from different political outfits, 55 (29 pc) have pending cases and 35 (19 pc) among them have been slapped with serious criminal charges. Similarly, 32 pc BJD nominees for Assembly election have cases pending against them. 

“Among the major parties, 16 (59 pc) out of 27 candidates from Congress, 11 (39 pc) out of 28 from BJP, nine (32 pc) of 28 nominees from BJD and two (nine pc) of 22 BSP candidates have declared pending criminal cases,” the report stated.

Of 26 Lok Sabha candidates, 10 have assets of more than Rs one crore. While three are under-matric, four and five candidates have passed Classes X and XII. Six each are graduates and graduate professionals and only two are post-graduates. 

Likewise, of 189 Assembly nominees, only 82 are graduates or above while 101 candidates have academic qualification between Classes V and XII. Two female candidates are contesting Lok Sabha election and 16 are in the fray for Assembly election.

Three nominees each from BJP, Congress and BJD are crorepatis along with one Independent candidate. Congress nominee from Berhampur V Chandrasekhar Naidu is the richest with assets over Rs 36 crore while CPI(ML) Red Star candidate from Koraput Rajendra Kendruka has lowest asset of Rs 565. 

The BJD has highest 17 crorepati Assembly candidates followed by 14 from Congress, 11 from BJP and two from BSP, besides five Independent candidates. BJP’s Ananta Pratap Deo from Dharmagarh constituency has highest assets of over Rs 27 crore. 

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