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Date: 
02.04.2021
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KOCHI: The Supreme Court’s directions to keep criminal elements out of politics have had no effect on parties. According to a report released by NGOs monitoring political parties in the country,
38% candidates contesting in the state assembly elections have criminal cases against them.

In absolute numbers, out of the 928 candidates analysed, 355 candidates have declared criminal cases against them.

Of these, 167 have serious criminal cases registered against them. In 2016, 138 candidates had declared serious criminal cases against themselves.
At a press conference held online on Thursday, the Association for Democratic Reforms & National Election Watch said 75 out of 140 constituencies are red alert constituencies.
Red alert constituencies are those where three or more contesting candidates have declared criminal cases against them.
BJP leaders are leading the list and the candidates themselves have stated that the cases are politically motivated, and have been foisted on them.
Leading from the front is BJP state president K Surendran, who has 248 criminal cases against him. K S Radhakrishnan, BJP’s candidate from Tripunithura, has 211 criminal cases against him while AN Radhakrishnan, also of BJP, who has been fielded in Manalur constituency, has 176 criminal cases against him.
The BJP is using this as an election plank as most of the cases were registered during the Sabarimala protests.
Party-wise breakup of candidates with criminal cases are as follows: Seventy seven out of 89 candidates analysed in Congress have criminal cases registered against them. Seventy six out of 107 in BJP, 49 out of 72 in CPM, 17 out 25 in IUML, 10 out of 23 in CPI, four out of 12 in Kerala Congress (M)) and eight out of 72 in BSP have also declared criminal cases against them.
Sixteen candidates have declared cases related to crime against women. Out of 16 candidates, 1 candidate has declared cases related to rape (IPC Section-376).
The Supreme Court, in its directions issued on February 13, 2020, had specifically instructed political parties to give reasons for selecting such candidates and had asked why individuals without criminal antecedents could not be selected as candidates.
As per these mandatory guidelines, candidate selection has to be with reference to qualifications, achievements and merit of the candidate concerned.
Among the crorepati candidates, out of the 928 candidates analysed, 249 are crorepatis.
In 2016, out of the 1,125 candidates analysed, 202 (18%) were crorepatis.
Among the major parties, 21 out of 25 candidates from IUML, 10 out of 12 candidates from Kerala Congress (M), 49 out of 87 candidates from INC, 32 out of 72 candidates from CPI(M), 34 out of 107 candidates from BJP and 7 out of 23 candidates from CPI have declared assets valued more than Rs 1 crore.
The average of assets per candidate analysed in this year is Rs 1.69 crore. In 2016, average assets per candidate for 1,125 candidates was Rs.1.28 crore.
The average assets per candidate for 107 candidates analysed is is Rs. 2.17 crore. The average assets per candidate is Rs 3.01 crore for Congress (87analysed), Rs 1.53 crore for CPM (72 analyzed), Rs 3.49 crore for IUML (25 analyzed), Rs 88.05 lakh for CPI (23 analyzed) and Rs 2.97 crore for Kerala Cong (M) (12 analyzed).
In the 2016 Kerala assembly elections, out of the 1,125 candidates analysed, 311 had declared criminal cases against them.

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