Maharashtra LS polls 4th phase: 64 candidates face serious charges

Mumbai: As many as 64 candidates out of the total 323 contestants in the fray for the fourth phase of Lok Sabha elections in Maharashtra are facing serious criminal charges, as per the analysis of their affidavits.

A total of 17 seats, including those in Mumbai region, will go to polls on April 29 in the final phase of elections in the state.

As per the analysis of the affidavits of 320 candidates, done by the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR), total 109 nominees (34 per cent) are crorepatis,

The constituencies up for grabs are Nandurbar, Dhule, Dindori, Nashik, Palghar, Bhiwandi, Kalyan, Thane, Mumbai North, Mumbai North West, Mumbai North East, Mumbai North Central, Mumbai South Central, Mumbai South, Maval, Shirur and Shirdi.

A total of 89 candidates (28 per cent) have declared criminal cases while 64 (20 per cent) nominees are facing serious criminal charges, including murder and attempt to murder, as per the ADR data.

Two candidates have been convicted by courts.

While the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA) candidate from Nashik is facing a case related to murder, three other nominees have been booked for attempt to murder, it said.

While ten candidates have declared cases related to crime against women, two others related to kidnapping and six others related to robbery and dacoity.

Four candidates have declared cases related to communal disharmony and hate speech.

The candidates facing criminal and serious criminal cases represent various parties including the Shiv Sena, the BJP, the Congress, the NCP, and the Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA).

The VBA is led by Dalit leader Prakash Ambedkar and Asaduddin Owaisi of the AIMIM.

Party-wise, seven candidates of the VBA, four of the BSP, seven of the Shiv Sena, four of the Congress, four of the BJP and five nominees of the NCP have declared criminal cases, as per the data.

Among the candidates who are facing serious criminal cases, five represent the VBA.

Among the rest, four nominees are of the BSP, four of the Shiv Sena, one of the Congress, three of the BJP, and two of the NCP.

As per the analysis, 34 per cent of the total 320 candidates--109 in total--are crorepatis who have declared assets more than Rs one crore in their poll affidavits.

These candidates represent the Shiv Sena, the Congress, the NCP, the BJP, the VBA and the BSP.

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