Share of candidates with criminal records goes up in Gujarat polls

The number of candidates with criminal records has gone up substantially in the Gujarat Assembly polls this year. All the three major parties have fielded candidates having criminal records.

Similarly, the number of crorepati candidates has also increased in the state as out of the 833 candidates, 245 (29 per cent) are crorepatis whereas in 2017 Gujarat Assembly Elections phase II, out of 822 candidates 199 (24 per cent) were crorepatis.

As per a report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), out of 833 candidates analyzed, 163 (20 per cent) candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves. In 2017 Gujarat Assembly Elections Phase II, out of 822 candidates analysed, 101 (12 per cent) had declared criminal cases against themselves.

The Gujarat Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) have analysed the self-sworn affidavits of all 833 candidates who are contesting in the Gujarat Assembly Elections Phase II in 93 constituencies.

The ADR report said that 92 (11 per cent) have declared serious criminal cases against themselves. In 2017 among the major parties, 29(32 per cent) out of 90 candidates analysed from the Congress, 29 (31 per cent) out of 93 candidates analysed from the AAP, 18 (19 per cent) out of 93 candidates analysed from the BJP and four (33 per cent) out of 12 candidates analysed from the Bhartiya Tribal Party have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.

Among the major parties, 10 (11 per cent) out of 90 candidates analysed from the Congress, 17(18 per cent) out of 93 candidates analysed from the AAP, 14 (15 per cent)out of 93 candidates analysed from the BJP and one (8 per cent) out of 12 candidates analysed from the Bhartiya Tribal Party have declared serious criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.

The report said that nine candidates have declared cases related to crime against women. Out of the nine candidates, one candidate has declared case related to rape (IPC Section-376). Two candidates have declared cases related to murder (IPC Section-302)against themselves and eight candidates have declared cases related to attempt to murder(IPC Section-307) against themselves.

As per the report, 19 (20 per cent) out of 93 constituencies are Red alert constituencies. Red alert constituencies are those where three or more contesting candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves.

The ADR report said that out of the 833 candidates, 245 (29 per cent) are crorepatis. In 2017 Gujarat Assembly Elections phase II, out of 822 candidates, 199 (24 per cent) were crorepatis.

The role of money power in our elections is evident from the fact that all major political parties give tickets to wealthy candidates. Among the major parties 77 (86 per cent) out of 90 candidates analysed from the Congress, 75 (81 per cent) out of 93 candidates analysed from the BJP and 35 (38 per cent) out of 93 candidates analysed from the AAP have declared assets valued more than Rs 1 crore, said the ADR report.

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