The rich are all set to rule the roster of the contestants in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, with one out of three contestants having declared assets above ₹1 crore (₹10 million). Contestants with self-declared criminal cases are significant too, with one in five having a serious criminal case against them.
Maharashtra is set to vote with Haryana as they elect a new legislative assembly on October 21.
In Maharashtra, the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena combine seem confident of sweeping the polls on the back of a good show in the Lok Sabha elections and a series of defections from the opposition Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Congress.
BOOM brings you the criminal and financial numbers behind the contestants in Maharashtra this election as given by the Association For Democratic Reforms (ADR).
ADR has analysed 3,112 affidavits of the 3,237 candidates contesting the election.
Some Salient Numbers Of The Maharashtra
How Money Talks In The Maharashtra Election
As per the classifications done by ADR, which divides the asset groups of contestants into five categories, 58% of contestants fall into the lower two rungs – with declared assets of less than ₹50 lakhs.
The Samajwadi Party (SP) has the highest average assets per candidate, surpassing the BJP – which is at the second spot; their ₹31 crores per candidates to the BJP’s ₹23 crore.
The Congress stands at ₹14 crores per candidate with the Shiv Sena and the NCP having ₹12 crores and ₹11 crores respectively.
However, it must be noted that parties are fielding varying number of candidates.
While the Congress, BJP, Shiv Sena and the NCP are fielding 147, 162, 124, 116 candidates respectively, AAP is fielding 23, the Vanchit Bahujan Agadhi 223, the BSP 246, the SP 7 with 1359 independents.
Assembly constituencies within Mumbai also lead when it comes to fielding candidates with the highest assets in Maharashtra.
Education, Age and Gender
In addition, Only 7.6% of candidates contesting this election from Maharashtra are female candidates.
In Maharashtra, there are 176 out of the 288 constituencies which are 'red-alert' constituencies - which ADR defines as those constituencies where three or more contestants have self-declared criminal charges against them.
The number of self declared convicts are at 27, and includes all declared convictions leading from one-time fines to imprisonment.
Meanwhile, 59% of all the candidates fielded by the BJP have declared criminal cases against themselves. 36% cases against all BJP candidates fall under ‘serious criminal charges’. In the Congress, 61% of their candidates have criminal charges against them, 48% of their candidates have serious criminal charges against them.
ADR defines a serious criminal case as:
- Punishments of 5 years or more or if it is non-bailable
- Electoral offences (such as bribery)
- Assault, murder, kidnap or rape
- Offences mentioned under the Representation of People’s Act, 1951
- Offences of corruption, under the Prevention of Corruption Act
The Important Battles Of This Election
The Maharashtra general election will see some high-profile battles between factions of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and the United Progressive Alliance (UPA).
Worli will witness the first member of Shiv Sena's Thackeray family contest polls. The late Bal Thackeray's grandson Aditya Thackeray will be contesting his first election from this constituency in Mumbai against Suresh Mane of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP)
Nagpur South West
This constituency will see the Congress' Ashish Deshmukh - a defector from the BJP- take on incumbent chief minister Devendra Phadnavis
The opposition UPA has fielded no candidate against BJP Maharashtra president Chandrakant Patil.
A stronghold of the Pawar scion, Baramati will see Ajit Pawar of the NCP fight Gopichand Padalkar of the BJP.
Another high-profile battle will see Maharashtra's finance minister Sudhir Munganitwar of the BJP fight against Dr. Vishwas Zade of the Congress.
Counting of the votes will take place on October 24.