22 crorepatis in fray in April 29 Bengal elections
Out of 68 candidates across parties contesting from the eight West Bengal seats in the fourth phase of the Lok Sabha elections, 22 have assets worth over Rs 1 crore and 14 have declared criminal cases against them, said a study on Thursday.
Among the candidates in the fray for the fourth-phase polls in the state, Trinamool Congress' Mamtaz Sanghamita from Bardhaman-Durgapur constituency has topped the crorepati list declaring over Rs 13-crore assets, followed by the party's Asansol nominee and yesteryear's actress Moon Moon Sen (Sreemati Dev Varma) with assets worth over Rs 10 crore.
The Congress' Baharampur candidate and party's state committee former President Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has declared assets worth over Rs 10 crore, according to the study released here.
Apart from Sanghamita and Sen, there are four Trinamool Congress candidates -- Satabdi Roy for Birbhum and Apurba Sarkar for Baharampur, who declared assets worth over Rs 4 crore each, while Mahua Moitra for Krishnanagar and Sunil Kumar Mondal for Bardhaman East having properties worth over Rs 2 crore each.
Except Chowdhury, there are four Congress candidates -- Ranajit Mukherjee for Bardhaman-Durgapur, Imam Hossain for Birbhum, Biswarup Mondal for Asansol and Intaj Ali Shah for Krishnanagar constituency -- declaring assets worth Rs 1 crore each.
Of the eight Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidates, six are crorepatis.
Union Minister Babul Supriya, who is seeking re-election from Asansol, has declared over Rs 5 crore assets, while party's Bardhaman-Durgapur nominee and Union Minister S.S. Ahluwalia has shown assets worth over Rs 2 crore.
BJP's Krishnanagar candidate Kalyan Chaubey, a former Indian goalkeeper, has declared assets worth more than Rs 2 crore, while party's Bardhaman East's nominee Paresh Chandra Das and Jaggannath Sarkar contesting from Ranaghat seat have shown assets worth over Rs 3 crore and Rs 1 crore, respectively.
Two Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) candidates have declared over Rs 1 crore assets.
Average assets per candidate contesting from the eight constituencies in the fourth phase is Rs 1.29 crore based on their self-sworn affidavits, according to an analysis done by West Bengal Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms.
Among major parties, the average assets per candidate for the eight Trinamool Congress nominees is over Rs 4 crore, while the BJP and Congress candidates have average assets worth over Rs 2 crore.
One Independent candidate, Samir Biswas, contesting elections in the fourth phase polls in the eastern state has not declared his PAN details while only 41 candidates have given their ITR (income tax return) details, the report said.
The eight constituencies will go to the hustings in the fourth phase of polls on April 29.
"Out of 68 candidates analysed, 14 (25 per cent) candidates have declared criminal cases against them," the study said.
According to it, 24 candidates, out of 68, have declared their educational qualification to be between 5th and 12th standard, while 44 candidates have shown having education qualification of graduation or above.