Lok Sabha elections 2019: 21 of 82 candidates in Bihar for fifth phase carry criminal…

Of the 82 candidates in fray for the fifth phase of polling in Bihar, which will take place on May 6 on five Lok Sabha seats, 21 (26%) have declared criminal cases against them, while 14 (17%) have declared serious criminal cases against them, as per a study conducted by the Bihar Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).

All the parties have fielded candidates with criminal cases. These include prominent candidates like BJP’S Ashok Kumar Yadav from Madhubani and Ajay Nishad from Muzaffarpur, RJD’S Chandrika Rai from Saran and Shiv Chandra Ram from Hajipur and LJP’S Pashupati Kumar Paras from Hajipur.

The five Lok Sabha seats going to polls in the fifth phase are Sitamarhi, Madhubani, Muzaffarpur, Hajipur and Saran. Maximum number of candidates in the fray are from Muzaffarpur (22), Sitamarhi (20) and Madhubani (17).

Another important finding is that 25 (30%) of the total candidates are crorepatis, with sitting Muzaffarpur MP Ajay Nishad of BJP leading the pack with assets worth Rs 29.88 crore, followed by Chandrika Rai of RJD from Saran (Rs 9.69 crore), Devendra Rakesh of the Bajjikanchal Vikas Party from Muzaffarpur (Rs 9.67 crore) and Rajiv Pratap Rudy of BJP from Saran (Rs 8.07 crore).

BSP has highest number of four crorepati candidates in fray, followed by three of BJP. The average asset per candidate comes to around Rs 1.62 crore. However, only 46 candidates gave their Income Tax returns (ITR), while 11 did not disclose their PAN details.

In contrast, there are candidates like Ravindra Kumar Chandra alias Raja Babu of Bhartiya Mitra Party from Sitamarhi, Nandan Kumar of Janata Party from Muzaffarpur and Juned Khan of Bhartiya Insan Party from Saran with assets less than Rs 6,000. Female representation continues to be poor even in fifth phase, with just 6 candidates (7%) in fray on five seats.

In terms to educational qualification, 38 candidates are intermediate or below, while there are nine graduates, 13 post graduates and four doctorates. A positive sign is that 55 candidates in the fray are less than 50 years of age.

Contests across the five seats going to polls in the fifth phase are expected to be close, with heavyweights like Rajiv Pratap Rudy and Chandrika Rai in fray. Madhubani, from where Congress rebel Shakeel Ahmad is fighting as an Independent is also expected to witness a close contest.

First Published:
May 03, 2019 14:35 IST

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