UP polls: Muscle power still a driving force

69 candidates are trying to contest the polls being lodged in different jails across the state, sources said.

Updated: Jan 15, 2012, 14:09 PM IST

Lucknow: At a time when Election Commission
is leaving no stone unturned to check use of money and muscle
power in elections, as many as 77 candidates in Uttar Pradesh
have a history of serious criminal charges against them.

According to the data released by the National Election
Watch, at least 77 out of the 617 candidates announced by
various political parties carry criminal cases on them which
include charges like murder, attempt to murder, abduction and
dacoity.

Moreover, 69 candidates are trying to contest the polls
being lodged in different jails across the state, sources
said.

Bigwigs like Munna Bajrangi, Brijesh Singh, Ateeq Ahmad
and Mukhtar Ansari will be once again trying their luck in the
assembly elections.

Prem Prakash Singh alias Munna Bajrangi, who is
contesting on a Apna Dal ticket from Madiyahon constituency in
Jaunpur district, is named in at least 10 murder cases
including that of BJP MLA Krishnanand Rai. He is currently
lodged in Delhi`s Tihar jail.

While Bajrangi`s supporters are bracing up for
campaigning, another heavy weight Ateeq Ahmad is in fray from
Allahabad, also on Apna Dal ticket.

Similarly, independent MLA Mukhtar Ansari will be
contesting from his own party Qaumi Ekta Dal. Anasri, who has
several cases against him, joined BSP and contested Lok Sabha
election in 2009, but was later expelled and lodged in jail.

Another heavy weight Brijesh Singh, who is currently in
Ahemdabad jail, is planning to contest from Saiyedraza seat in
Chandauli district as Pragatisheel Manav Samaj Party
candidate. Brijesh, who carries a cash reward of Rs five lakh,
was arrested from Orrisa in 2008.

SP MLA Vijay Mishra, who is behind the bars in connection
with the attack on a minister in BSP government Nand Gopal
Nandi, will be contesting again from Bhadohi district. Two
persons, including a journalist, were killed in explosion near
Nandi`s house in Allahabad on July 2010.

Kalawati Bind, who is contesting on Congress ticket from
Jamania area in Ghazipur district, is currently lodged in jail
in connection with arson and death of a policemen during
attack on a police outpost in Jamania. The party has given
ticket to Shailesh Kumar Singh from Ghazipur, who also is in
jail under National Security Act and Gangster Act.

PTI