Embargo: 12 Noon of 24 April, 2007
UP Assembly Elections 2007
UP Election Watch
Statement of Sant Vivek Das of Kabir Chaura Math, Bibhu Mohapatra of ADR,Dr. Lenin of PVCHR, and Shruti of UP Election watch
The fifth phase of UP Assembly elections covers 58 constituencies. There are in all 863 candidates in the fray. With this phase the total number of candidates considered by UP Election watch reaches 4231. There are 258 (29.89%) candidates put up by major political parties, 228 (26.41%) by smaller political parties, and 377 (43.68%) candidates are independents. There are 57 (6.60%) female candidates in the fray this time.
Summary of Findings:
There are 115 candidates who have pending criminal cases against them. With this, the total number of candidates in all 5 phases who have pending criminal cases reaches 582.
For the fifth phase, BSP leads the list of such candidates with 26/58 (44.82%), closely followed by SP 21/56 (37.50%). The BJP and the INC lag behind with 12/48 (25%) and 7/58 (12.06%) respectively. In the third and fourth phases, it was SP, which led the list in this category.
But if we look at the combined figures for all the 5 phases, SP still tops the list of candidates with pending cases with 34.62%, followed by BSP, 32.53%, BJP, 27.86%, and the INC, 20.42%.
Out of the 115 candidates who have pending criminal cases, 58 (50.43%) are either Graduates or post Graduates with professional degrees.
If we look at the age groups of candidates with pending criminal cases, 66 (57.39%) fall in the category of 41-60 yrs, 43 (37.39%) in the 25-40 yrs, and only 6 (5.22%) fall in the category of 61 and above age group.
Out of the 115, there are 23 candidates who have declared assets worth more than a Crore. Among the major parties, SP, BSP and BJP have 9, 8, 3 candidates in this category respectively.
In the list arranged according to number of cases, the Apna Dal candidate from Kunda (98) leads the list with 45 cases pending against him.
There are 7 Constituencies, which have 4 or more candidates with pending cases.
There are 16 candidates among the 115, who have pending cases against them according to the affidavit submitted by UP Govt to the High Court.6 of them belong to the BSP, 5 to the SP, and 3 to the BJP. Among these 2 BJP, 1BSP, and 1 SP candidate have not declared any cases pending against them in their current affidavit filed along with the nomination papers.
There are 61 candidates who have declared their assets worth more than Rs.1 Crore. The richest candidate for this phase is from Lucknow East, from the INC. This candidate does not have PAN. Interestingly INC has been putting up the richest candidates in the last two phases also.
Among the 61 crorepatis, 18 belong to the SP, 14 to INC, 13 to BSP and 8 to the BJP.
In the top 10 candidates with high assets, the INC has 5, BSP,2, SP,2 and BJP,1.
In the list for High assets and NO PAN, there are 13 candidates, of which, 5 belong to BSP, 4 to INC, and 3 to SP and1 to NLHP.
Average assets of a main party candidate has significantly gone up in this phase with the average INC candidate having 1.77 Crores, BSP-1.13 Crores, SP—1.01 Crores, and BJP 0.56 Crores.
The average main party candidates’ liability too has gone up significantly. INC tops the list with 12.15 lakhs, followed by BSP, 7.90 lakhs, SP, 7.88 lakhs and BJP 2.76 lakhs.
In the list of candidates with high liability and NO PAN, there are 14 candidates. The loan amounts range from Rs 5 lakh to 1.5 Crores. BSP and SP have 4 candidates each in this category, while the INC has 3.
In the top ten list of candidates with high liabilities, the INC has 5 candidates, SP—3 and BSP—2.
Increasingly we see that there is a preference for educated candidates by all the main political parties. The combined average for all the 5 phases show that 65% candidates fielded by main parties are either Graduates and above or professionals.
In the category of age there is again a marked preference by main political parties for candidates in the age group of 41-60 (64.55%). BSP and SP head this category with 70.69 % and 69.64% candidates respectively. On the other hand, when we take into consideration the preference for younger candidates (25-40 yrs) we see that INC and BJP lead the list with 27.59% and 27.08% candidates respectively in this category.
The overall trend up till the fifth phase indicate that political parties are still relying on muscle power and money power to a great deal to win elections, though tickets to new candidates with pending criminal record shows a downward trend. One thing is clear that the new UP Assembly will most probably be a younger and educated one.
The UP Election Watch is a non-partisan civil society alliance for clean politics and accountable governance. Collection of affidavits, collation of information contained there in, and dissemination among voters of this information before the voting day are voluntary civil society efforts. This is intended to enable the voter to make an informed and responsible choice while casting their votes. It is to be remembered that in a democracy there is no position higher than that of the CITIZEN.
The UPEW, along with 200 CBOs/NGOs created a network of citizens across the state for this purpose.
The process has been initiated in the state by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) which is engaged in strengthening democracy in the country through political and electoral reforms.
People's Vigilance committee on Human Rights (PVCHR) has become the coordinating body of the whole process. PVCHR has been involved with the cause of torture, hunger, malnutrition, education, health and governance for the most marginalized and voiceless section of Indian society.
The data has been culled from the affidavits submitted by candidates along with their nomination papers. We have tried our best to be accurate and non-partisan in presenting the data. In case of doubt, please consult the Election Commission’s website, www.eci.gov.in .
DR. Lenin Bibhu Mohapatra
24 April 2007