Financial Express

In Goa, a total of 301 candidates are in the fray for 40 assembly seats that will go to the polls on February 14. Of the 301 candidates, 116 are from national parties, 66 from state parties, 51 from unrecognised parties and 68 are independents. According to the data shared by the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR), 26 per cent or 77 candidates have criminal cases registered against them, which is 11 per cent more as compared to the 2017 polls.

The ADR report also said that 18 per cent or 53 candidates have serious criminal cases against themselves. “Among the major parties, 17 (46%) out of 37 candidates analysed from INC, 6 (46%) out of 13 candidates analysed from Maharashtrawadi Gomantak, 1 (33%) out of 3 candidates analysed from Goa Forward Party, 4 (31%) out of 13 candidates analysed from NCP, 10 (25%) out of 40 candidates analysed from BJP, 6 (23%) out of 26 candidates analysed from AITC and 9 (23%) out of 39 candidates analysed from AAP have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits,” said the ADR.

This shows that the highest number of candidates with criminal cases are with Congress, followed by the MGP and BJP. The poll watchdog noted that 12 candidates have declared cases related to crime against women, of which one has a case related to rape. Eight candidates have cases of attempt to murder to their name.

The report said that 12 out of 40 constituencies are Red alert constituencies where three or more contesting candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves.

According to the affidavits analysed by the ADR, 187 candidates (62 per cent) are crorepatis. At least 31 per cent of candidates have assets worth more than Rs 5 crore, 16 per cent have between Rs 2 crore and Rs 5 crore, 20 per cent between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 50 lakh and 11 per cent have assets worth less than Rs 10 lakh.

As per the report, 95 per cent of BJP candidates are crorepatis, followed by 87 per cent of the Congress, 69 per cent of the MGP, 65 per cent of the TMC, 67 per cent of the GFP, 62 per cent of the AAP and 62 per cent of the NCP.

Congress candidate from Calangute – Michael Lobo and his wife Delilah who is contesting from the Siolim seat are the richest candidates with assets worth Rs 92 crore each, followed by Dr Chandrakant Shetye, an Independent candidate from Bicholim, with Rs 59 crore in assets.

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