Bhubaneswar: The BJP has fielded the highest number of tainted candidates in the first phase of the Lok Sabha polls in Odisha April 10, while three of AAP`s candidates have criminal cases against them, an election watchdog here said on Thursday.
As many as 98 candidates are in the fray for the 10 Lok Sabha seats. The Bharatiya Janat Party has fielded candidates in all 10 seats, and four of them have a criminal background, state coordinator of Election Watch told IANS.
Three of the eight candidates fielded by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) have criminal cases. Similarly, two of the 10 candidates fielded by the ruling Biju Janata Dal and one of the 10 fielded by the Congress have a criminal background, he said.
Election Watch based its information after scrutinising the affidavits filed by candidates with the Election Commission.
Overall, a total 19 candidates in the phase one have criminal background out of which 13 have declared serious criminal case like murder, attempt to murder, dacoity and criminal intimidation pending against them, he said.
AAP`s Narendra Mohanty, who is contesting for the Kandhamal Lok Sabha seat, has declared the highest of 28 cases against him. Three charges are related to murder, one related to attempt to murder and another related to dacoity with murder, he said.
Sukanta Kumar Panigrahi of the BJP who is contesting for the same seat has a case against him for assault and use of criminal force against a woman with the intent to outrage her modesty.
Polling will be held simultaneously April 10 and 17 for the state`s 21 Lok Sabha and 147 assembly seats.