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UP polls: 26% candidates have declared criminal cases, says poll watchdog ADR

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UP polls: 26% candidates have declared criminal cases, says poll watchdog ADR

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The report said 69 candidates have declared cases related to crime against women -- 10 of them related to rape; 37 criminal candidates have cases related to murder; and 159 have declared cases related to attempt to murder.

UP polls: 26% candidates have declared criminal cases, says poll watchdog ADR

With Assembly elections the flavour of the season, a poll watchdog report showed that the crime-politics nexus is alive and kicking. As much as 26 percent of the 4,406 candidates in the ongoing Uttar Pradesh polls whose affidavits were analysed have declared criminal cases against themselves, according to a report by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR). In the 2017 state elections, out of 4,823 candidates analysed, 859 (18 percent) had declared criminal cases against themselves.

The ADR said 889 (20 percent) candidates this year have declared serious criminal cases, while the number in 2017 was 704 (15 percent). Out of the 4,406 candidates analysed in Uttar Pradesh elections 2022, 1,142 (26 percent) have declared criminal cases against themselves, it said. Among the major parties, 65 percent (224 out of 347) of the candidates analysed from the SP, 58 percent (11 out of 19) of the Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party, 58 percent (19 out of 33) of the RLD have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.

Among other parties, 45 percent (169 out of 374) of the candidates analysed from the BJP, 40 percent (160 out of 397) of the Congress and 38 percent (153 out of 399) of the BSP have also declared criminal cases. Also, for the Apna Dal (Sonelal) the number was 35 percent (six out of 17), while the AAP's 18 percent candidates (62 out of 345) have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.

The ADR said 69 candidates have declared cases related to crime against women -- 10 of them related to rape (IPC Section-376). The ADR said 37 candidates have declared cases related to murder (IPC Section-302) against themselves, while 159 have declared cases related to attempt to murder (IPC Section-307) against themselves.

As many as 226 (56 percent) out of 403 constituencies are red alert constituencies -- those where three or more candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves. This number was 152 (38 percent) in the 2017 polls.

The role of money power in our elections is evident from the fact that all major political parties give tickets to wealthy candidates, the ADR said. Among the major parties 31 of the 33 candidates (94 percent) analysed from the RLD, 335 out of 374 (90 percent) candidates analysed from the BJP, 302 out of 347 (87 percent) candidates analysed from the SP have declared assets valued more than Rs 1 crore, the ADR said.

Also, 315 out of 399 (79 percent) candidates analysed from the BSP, 12 out of 17 candidates (71 percent) analysed from the Apna Dal (Sonelal) have declared asserts worth more than one crore. This number is 13 out of 19 candidates analysed (68 percent) from the Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party, 198 out of 397 (50 percent) for the Congress and 112 out of 345 (33 percent) for the Aam Aadmi Party.

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