Jaipur: Only 14 out of 238 candidates, who have filed their nominations for Rajasthan`s first phase polling on April 17 in 20 Lok Sabha seats, have criminal records as per their affidavits.
According to a report published today by two NGOs -- Rajasthan Election Watch and Association of Democratic Reforms, only six percent of the 238 contestants declared their crime history.
Of the total 14, a BJP candidate and four Independents were involved in serious nature of crime, Rajasthan Election Watch coordinator Renuka Pamecha and Association of Democratic Reforms coordinator Kamal Tak said at a joint press conference here.
The BJP MLA and party nominee from Kota was facing cases under Sections 143, 283, 332, 353 of the IPC with charges of voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty (IPC Section 332).
Independent candidates Kumbha Ram from Sriganganagar, Surendra Kumar Phulwariya from Sikar, Hanuman Beniwal from Nagaur, Om Prakash Jharoda from Jhunjhunu were also facing serious criminal cases, according to the joint survey.
As many as 71 of the 238 contestants were crorepatis, they said. BJP and Congress`s 18 candidates each, AAP`s 12, BSP`s two and Samajwadi Party`s one candidate were crorepatis.
The average total property/assets of candidates were to the tune of Rs 2.66 crore, BJP candidates` average was Rs 8.50 crore, Congress` Rs 13.39 crore, AAP Rs 3.30 lakh, BSP Rs 77.71 lakh, and SP Rs 14.02 crore.
Two Independents -- Gopal Valmki from Bikaner and Ratanlal Dhobi from Bhilwara seat -- are having just Rs 1,000 each, while Independent from Barmer Master Bhaira Ram Meghwal has only Rs 2,000 in cash.
As many as 105 out of 238 contestants have shown that they were under heavy debt burden. Interestingly, 112 of 238 candidates have not given any IT details.
The NGOs demanded that all political parties should treat their manifestos as a legal document, and bring in election reforms to bring more transparency in the society.