Amit Shah tops list of ‘criminal’ candidates

Amit Shah
Former home minister of Gujarat Amit Shah is among the top three candidates from the major political outfits featuring in the second phase of the Assembly elections who have "serious criminal cases of murder, kidnapping and theft" registered against them.

Shah, who is fighting on a BJP ticket from Naranpura constituency of Ahmedabad district, has declared two charges of murder and two charges of kidnapping registered against him. He is also facing charges of extortion and wrongful confinement, states a report released on Saturday by a non-political group - Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR).

The other two candidates in the list are Takhatsinh Solanki of Congress) who is contesting from Shehra Assembly constituency and Vikramsinh Rathod of BSP who is contesting from Kalol Assembly constituency. Takhatsinh is facing two charges of robbery, while Rathod is facing a charge of attempted murder.

Interestingly, two candidates from Shehra - Jetha Ahir (Jetha Bharvad) of BJP and Prafulchandra Vankar of BSP - have charges of rape registered against them.

Out of the 402 candidates analysed for the second phase of elections, 78 candidates or 19% of them have declared criminal cases against them. Among the major parties contesting the Assembly elections in the second phase in the state, Congress gave tickets to 28 candidates with declared criminal cases, BJP gave tickets to 26 and Gujarat Parivartan Party gave tickets to 13 candidates.

Crime meter

Natvarlal Patel from Mehsana has cases registered against him under the 'Prevention of Corruption Act'

BJP candidate from Balasinor, Rajesh Pathak is facing charge related to injuring or defiling place of worship with intent to insult the religion of any class

Jayanteelal Bhanushalee, BJP candidate from Abdasa faces a charge related to wearing garb or carrying token used by public servant with fraudulent intent

Congress candidate from Vaghodia, Dr Jayesh Patel is facing a charge related to word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman

A Congress candidate from Amraiwadi, Bipin Gadhavi is facing a charge related to wearing a garb or carrying token used by soldier, sailor or airman

A GPP candidate from Patan, Mema Chaudhary is facing a charge related to abatement of desertion of soldier, sailor or airman

Assembly polls and the candidates

Out of the 955 candidates analysed, 192 or 20% of the candidates have criminal cases against them. In 2007 assembly elections, this figure stood at 23%

Congress has given tickets to 55 candidates who have criminal cases, BJP to 48, BSP to 10, JD(U) to 9, SP to 8, NCP to 5, GPP to 34

A total of 277 candidates are graduates or higher qualifications

A total of 48 candidates are more than 65 years of age

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