Mamata’s Left challenger increases wealth nearly 19 times since 2004: study

May 9th, 2009 - 7:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, May 9 (IANS) Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) candidate Robin Deb may again fail to beat Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee in the Lok Sabha poll for the prestigious Kolkata South seat, but is far ahead of her in terms of assets he has amassed in the past five years.
A study conducted by the West Bengal chapter of the National Election Watch (NEW) has revealed that Deb’s wealth increased by 1,867 percent in five years.

The 60-year-old Deb, who is contesting against Banerjee in Kolkata South parliamentary constituency, has mentioned in his affidavits that he has assets worth Rs.1,457,231 in 2009, while he had Rs.74,102 in 2004, when he contested against her in the same constituency.

Meanwhile, Banerjee has said in her affidavits in 2009 that she possesses assets worth Rs.473,194, up by 27 percent compared to 2004, when her assets amounted to Rs.374,035.

“Politics is a recession-free job. Through our initiative, we’re focussed to highlight the issues like disproportionate increase of wealth and criminal records of candidates who are contesting elections. This is targeted to improve our democracy and help bringing good governance in the country,” NEW founder and chairman Trilochan Sastri said at a press conference here.

The NEW is a nationwide campaign comprising of more than 1,200 NGOs and other citizen-led organisations working on electoral reforms, improving democracy and governance in the country.

The body also looked at the affidavits filed by 100 candidates belonging to various political parties for 11 constituencies that will go to polls May 13.

“About eight percent of candidates, who will contest in the third phase election from the state, have criminal records including charges like murder, attempt to murder, kidnapping and extortion,” its report said.

The report also noted that about 69 percent of the candidates are graduates or hold higher degrees, which is much higher than the national average of 60 percent.

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Politics |