34 Lok Sabha candidates in Andhra have criminal record: Study

April 8th, 2009 - 11:04 pm ICT by IANS  

Bahujan Samaj Party New Delhi, April 8 (IANS) As many as 34 candidates from various parties in the first phase of Lok Sabha elections in Andhra Pradesh have criminal records, according to an analysis made as part of a national campaign by NGOs.
The parties fielding these candidates include the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Congress, Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), Communist Party of India (CPI) and the Samajwadi Party, the National Election Watch (NEW) said in a statement Wednesday.

NEW represents more than 1,200 NGOs and other citizen-led organisations working on electoral reforms, improving democracy and governance in India.

The first phase of Lok Sabha polls will take place April 16.

“Out of 315 contestants fighting for 22 seats, 34 have pending criminal charges against them, many of them very serious. Candidates with generous means have given transparency a complete go-by by not disclosing their income tax, PAN in the affidavits,” the survey revealed.

“The careful analysis of the affidavits has revealed that a large number of candidates have not given valuations of their assets (like vehicles, gold, land, buildings etc) which is in complete violation of the judgement of the Supreme Court of 2003,” said the statement.

“The number of contestants with assets worth more than Rs.10 millions stands at 64 (out of the 315). This points to a very clear trend of growing money power in politics among parties across the spectrum,” it added.

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