There are 193 crorepatis contesting the 2009 general elections during the first phase, a detailed study conducted by the Association for Democratic Reforms and the National Election Watch suggests.
The study says that 14 per cent of the candidates contesting the elections in the first phase are crorepatis. According to NEW, there are 1,715 candidates in the fray, but details of only 1,440 are available as yet.
Andhra Pradesh has the most number of crorepati candidates. Out of the 314 candidates in the first phase, 64 are millionaire candidates.
Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra are at second and third position with 35 and 29 such candidates respectively.
Party wise details reveal that the Congress tops the list with 45 crorepatis while the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party are at second and third place with 30 and 23 such candidates each.
The average assets per candidate of each party are interesting. The Mana Party, a political outfit representing the backward classes in Andhra Pradesh, leads the pack with the candidates having an average asset value of Rs 27 crore. The party has only two candidates.
The Telugu Desam Party is a close second with Rs 23 crore. The Nationalist Congress Party candidates come third with Rs 10 crore while the Congress and the BJP candidates have an average asset value of Rs 4 and Rs 2 crore each. The report suggests that the percentage of contesting crorepatis has increased from 9 per cent in 2004 to 14 per cent in 2009.
Candidate with the highest assets
Nama Nageswara Rao of the Telugu Desam Party is the richest candidate. Aged 50 and contesting from Khammam in Andhra Pradesh this man is worth Rs 173 crore. He has moveable assets of Rs 1,41,28,66,278 and immovable assets of Rs 32,46,41,855.
Patel Praful Manoharbhai of the NCP is the second richest candidate. Contesting from the Bhandara Gondiya constituency, this man is worth Rs 89 crore. He has moveable assets of Rs Rs 15,20,54,970 and immovable assets of Rs 74,70,10,007.
Dr G Vivekanand of the Indian National Congress with Rs 89 crore comes third. Contesting from Peddapalle in Andhra Pradesh this man has moveable assets of Rs 23,99,68,026 and immovable assets of Rs 48,95,41,656.
Candidates with lowest assets
Interestingly, Andhra Pradesh tops the list with candidates with lowest assets. Out of the 76 candidates who have absolutely no assets, 50 are from Andhra Pradesh. None of these 76 candidates barring one with Zero assets belong to any major party. All these candidates are from smaller parties or independents.
The only candidate with no assets who belongs to a major party-the BSP is Gangadhar Gade who is contesting from Amravati in Maharashtra.
The total number of candidates with criminal background who will be contesting the elections are 222. The Congress leads the pack with 24 candidates while the BJP is a close second with 23.
This would mean that 16 per cent of the candidates contesting the polls in the first phase have a criminal background. The BSP with 17 and the SP with 10 are in the third and fourth position where candidates with a criminal background are concerned.
All candidates put together have 206 charges of heinous nature which include murder, attempt to murder, kidnapping and extortion.
A state wise break up would suggest that Bihar once again tops the list with 51 tainted candidates out of the 200 who are contesting. This would mean that the percentage of tainted candidates from Bihar is 25.50.
Uttar Pradesh with 46 and Maharashtra with 42 are second and third respectively while Andhra Pradesh with 34 is fourth.
The most sensitive constituency during the first phase of the election is the Jahanabad constituency in Bihar. This is considered to be a red alert constituency as there are 8 candidates with a criminal background contesting the elections from this constituency.
The Chandauli constituency in Uttar Pradesh and Chandrapur in Maharashtra and the two other sensitive constituencies in the first phase since there are 7 candidates each with a criminal background.
The state, which has the most number of constituencies with a red alert, is Bihar with 9 constituencies. Maharashtra is second with 9 while Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh have 7 and 5 such constituencies. Jharkhand and Orissa have 5 and 2 constituencies respectively.
The Congress candidates lead the pack in this segment party wise. The report states that 27 Congress candidates have not furnished their PAN card details. The BJP is second with 30 candidates. However, there are 515 independent candidates out of the 619 in the first phase who have not furnished their PAN details.
The other statistics available for the first phase of the elections are:
- Number of women candidates is just 122 (7%) as compared to 1593 of men (93%)
- Around 60% of candidates are graduates, Post Graduates or Doctorates.