Santosh K. Joy
New Delhi

Every three out of four candidates who contested the recent elecions to the upper house of Parliament have assets worth at least Rs1 crore, while one out of four has a crimi nal background, says a study.

Elections for 55 Rajya Sabha seats were held on 14 June and 17 June. The study by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch covers 54 candidates who con- tested 49 seats in 12 states, said ADR, which studied the sworn affidavits of the candidates.

The affidavits of candidates for the six seats of Tamil Nadu were not pro- vided by the Election Commission, it said in a statement.

Of the 15 candidates from various parties with criminal cases pending against them, six had serious charg- es--including attempt to murder, wrongful confinement, cheating and forgery, against them, according to the study. All candidates with pending criminal cases won the elections.

Three of the Congress party's 16 can- - didates have a criminal background, followed by two out of 11 for the Bhar- atiya Janata Party and one out of seven for the Bahujan Samaj Party.

Both the candidates of the National- ist Congress Party also admitted to criminal backgrounds in their affida- vits.

A total of 43 of the 54 contestants are worth at least Rs1 crore; 38 of them won the polls, according to the study.

Those who won election included businessman Vijay Mallya, environmen minister Jairam Ramesh and lawyer Ram Jethmalani. Only three women managed to enter the Upper House in the elections, the ADR study said.

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