Lokmat Times
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In the third phase of the Lok Sabha elections, a recent report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) ...

In the third phase of the Lok Sabha elections, a recent report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) reveals that out of 1,352 candidates vying for seats, only 9 percent are women. Additionally, the report highlights that 18 percent of these candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves.

According to an analysis conducted by the ADR and The National Election Watch on details of candidates contesting the elections in the third phase, seven candidates have disclosed prior convictions.

The third phase of the elections will be held on May 7. Among the 244 candidates with criminal records, five face charges related to murder while 24 have been booked in cases of attempted murder. Furthermore, the analysis of self-sworn affidavits from the 1,352 candidates has revealed that 38 candidates have been associated with crimes against women, while 17 have declared cases linked to hate speech. 

These findings underscore trends in criminality and wealth accumulation among political hopefuls. The prevalence of criminal cases varies notably among major political parties, with concerning indications emerging from candidates representing prominent parties like the BJP, Congress, and the Samajwadi Party.

The report also highlighted the disparity in the candidates' financial backgrounds. It disclosed that 29 percent or 392 candidates are "crorepatis", with the average assets per candidate standing at a substantial Rs 5.66 crore. The top three candidates, boasting declared assets in the hundreds of crores, with the highest declared assets exceeding Rs 1,361 crore. Following the filing of nominations and affidavits, the Congress nominee from Indore has opted to withdraw his candidature.

The analysis also scrutinizes the educational and demographic profiles of the candidates. According to the report, 47 percent or 639 candidates hold educational qualifications ranging from classes 5 to 12, while 44 percent or 591 candidates are graduates or possess higher educational qualifications.

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