Shimla: A total of 163 candidates contesting the Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections have never filed their income tax returns, a report released by an election watchdog has found.
Jointly released by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and Himachal Pradesh Election Watch (HPEW) and based on affidavits filed by 445 out of 459 candidates, the report says that 163 aspirants, which is 37 per cent of the surveyed candidates, have declared that they never filed I-T returns.
Giving the break up, the report said BSP, with 40 out of 62 candidates (65 per cent) has fielded highest number of such candidates, followed by HLP with 13 out of 32 candidates (41 per cent).
BJP has roped in 11 out of 68 candidates (16 per cent), AITC 11 of 26 candidates (42 per cent) and Congress has 2 out of 68 candidates who have never filed returns.
Abha Bhaiya of Himachal Pradesh Election Watch said aim of the survey is to make the voters know what their candidates write in their affidavits, so that they can make an informed choice before casting their vote.
Himachal Pradesh Election Watch is the state chapter of National Election Watch