Kolkata: As many as 107 candidates in the fray in the third and fourth phases of West Bengal assembly elections are crorepatis whereas 128 candidates have criminal cases against them. Affidavits filed by the candidates reveal that 61 of the 418 candidates in the third phase and 46 of the 345 candidates in the fourth phase are crorepatis — multi-millionaires.
The West Bengal Election Watch on Monday said that 80 aspirants in the third phase and 48 candidates in the fourth phase have declared criminal cases, including serious offences like murder and rape, pending against them.
In the third phase, the Trinamool Congress heads the multi-millionaires' list with 27 candidates, followed by the Bharatiya Janata Party with 14 and the Congress with 11. The BJP's Somabrta Mandal from Shyampukur constituency in Kolkata is the wealthiest candidate in the third phase with assets worth over Rs 28.65 crore.
The average worth of assets held by the 418 candidates in the third phase is Rs 74.76 lakh. In the fourth phase, the Trinamool Congress has fielded 19 crorepati candidates, followed by the BJP with eight and the Congress with five.
Trinamool nominee and state Finance Minister Amit Kumar Mitra, contesting from Khardaha in North 24-Parganas, heads the multi-millionaire list in the fourth phase with assets worth over Rs.11.74 crore.
The average worth of assets held by 345 candidates in the fourth phase is Rs 50.02 lakh. Of the 80 candidates in the third phase with criminal cases, 65 face serious charges of murder, rape, attempt to murder and kidnapping. Trinamool has 20 candidates with criminal cases, followed by the Congress and the Communist Party of India-Marxist with 16 each and the BJP 15.
In the fourth phase, Trinamool has fielded 15 candidates with criminal cases, the BJP seven and the Congress and the CPM six each.
Sixty-two constituencies spread across Burdwan, Kolkata, Murshidabad and Nadia districts will go to polls on 21 April in the third phase.
Forty nine constituencies in Howrah and North 24-Parganas will go to polls on 25 April in the fourth phase.