The Economic Times
Himanshi Dhawan
New Delhi


NEW DELHI: It is a rich man's world and nothing proves it better than the election results. A staggering 50% of legislators who were voted to power in three states are crorepatis.

An analysis by National Election Watch (NEW) goes further to extrapolate that deeper a candidate's pockets, better his/her chances of winning. And the number of moneybags is rising. The number of MLAs in Maharashtra who have assets of over a crore is 184 this year or 63.89%, up from 2004's 108.

Similar figures for Haryana are up from 47 in 2004 elections to 65 in 2009 or 72.22%. Arunachal elected 35 or 58.33% of the total candidates, up from 17 in 2004.

"NEW looked at the contesting candidates and their chances of success and found that the more money you have, better are your chances of being elected," Anil Bairwal, NEW coordinator, said.

Interestingly, only 0.98% of candidates who had declared low assets, that is less than Rs 10 lakh, got elected in Maharashtra. This number was 2.34% for Haryana while 48% of candidates who declared assets of more than Rs 10 crore won in Maharashtra and about 44% of such candidates got elected in Haryana. For Arunachal, 53% of candidates who declared assets of more than Rs 10 crore won the elections.

The analysis was conducted by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch (NEW), a nationwide campaign comprising of more than 1,200 NGOs and other citizen-led organisations, working on electoral reforms, improving democracy and governance in India.

Besides their financial health, criminal background of elected representatives threw up some interesting facts. Out of 900 candidates with pending criminal cases who contested in these elections, 161 won.

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