Bhubaneswar: BJD’s Puri Lok Sabha candidate and scion of one of India’s most illustrious judicial families in the country, Pinaki Mishra is the richest among the 415 candidates contesting the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in Odisha, in the third phase, scheduled on April 23, said a report today.
According to the Odisha Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) report released in a press meet here, as many as 119 candidates contesting contesting the polls are crorepatis.
With assets worth over Rs 117 crore, Supreme Court lawyer and three-time Parliamentarian Mishra topped the list.
BJP’s Sambalpur Lok Sabha nominee Nitesh Ganga Deb’s has assets worth over Rs 26 crore, the report said.
Congress Dhenkanal Lok Sabha candidate K. P. Singhdeo stood at third spot with assets worth over Rs 15 crore.
Similarly, out of 354 candidates in fray for 42 Assembly seats, 103 are declared crorepatis in Odisha.
Congress MLA candidate for Baramba, Bobby Mohanty, a geologist by profession and alumni of Dhanbad-based Indian School of Mines, is the richest among the 354 candidates with total assets worth over Rs 106 crore.
Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) President Niranjan Patnaik, who is contesting from two seats – Ghasipura and Bhandaripokhari – owns assets worth over Rs 60 crore.
Srimanta Kumar Tripathy, Independent candidate from Keonjhar Assembly seat, has declared his total assets worth over Rs 46 crore, the report said.
It seems the crime wave is here to stay in Indian politics. Of the total candidates contesting in the third phase, as many as 134 have criminal cases pending against them, the ADR report claimed.
Of total candidates fighting the Lok Sabha polls, about 25 per cent have declared criminal cases, .Likewise, around 34 per cent of the total candidates in the fray for Assembly seats have criminal cases against them, it added.
The second phase of polling will be held for six Lok Sabha constituencies — Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Puri, Sambalpur, Keonjhar and Dhenkanal — along with the 42 Assembly segments in their jurisdiction on April 23.