Business Line
New Delhi

The link between elections and growth of personal wealth is once again clear from the rise in average assets of the 24 re-contesting candidates in phase-1 of Chhattisgarh Assembly elections to be held on November 11.

Their average assets rose from Rs 31.34 lakh in 2008 to Rs 1.16 crore in 2013.

Out of the 24 re-contesting candidates, 12 are sitting MLAs from the BJP, whose assets have grown by 330 per cent since 2008, said the Association for Democratic Reforms and Chhattisgarh Election Watch, which analysed the self-sworn affidavits of all the 143 candidates in 18 constituencies.

Per candidate average assets were the highest for Congress at Rs 1.75 crore, followed by BJP at Rs 1.34 crore.

Out of the total 143 candidates in the fray in the first phase, 10 per cent have criminal cases against them, 17 per cent are crorepatis and the average asset per candidate is Rs 57.84 lakh.

Raman Singh, the incumbent Chief Minister of the BJP-led Government in the State, declared the highest income of Rs 32.26 lakh in the last income-tax returns filed for 2012-13, followed by Dinesh Gandhi of BJP with total income of Rs 13.66 lakh and Jhadu Ram Nareti of Chhattisgarh Swabhiman Manch (CSM) with an income of Rs 13.14 lakh.

Of the 143 affidavits analysed, 54 candidates are graduates or have higher degrees, while 88 are 12th pass and below.

A total of 104 (73 per cent) candidates declared their age between 25 and 50 years, while only 36 candidates declared their age between 51 and 70 years.

The representation of women continues to be poor across national parties, with only 11 women in the fray, of which three are from the Congress and two from BJP.

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