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1/3rd candidates in Bihar poll phase II facing criminal cases

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New Delhi: About one-third of the candidates for the second-phase of the Bihar assembly polls have declared their criminal cases, with the BJP, JD-U and RJD fielding the maximum number of such candidates, the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) said on Friday.

There are 456 candidates in the fray in the second phase of the Bihar polls. Polling for 32 seats in the second phase will be held on October 16.

Twenty four percent candidates have declared serious criminal cases including cases related to murder, attempt to murder, communal disharmony, kidnapping and crimes against women, the ADR said in a statement.

While 11 candidates have declared cases related to murder, 36 face attempt to murder cases.

The statement said that 106 (23 percent) of 456 candidates are “crorepatis (millionaires)” with the Janata Dal-United (JD-U) and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) having them in the largest proportion.

The average of assets per candidate contesting in the second phase of Bihar assembly elections is Rs 1.18 crores.

The ADR and Bihar Election Watch analysed the self-sworn affidavits of all 456 candidates in the fray in the second phase, the statement added.

“Out of all the 456 candidates, 142 (31 percent) candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves. 110 (24 percent) candidates have declared serious criminal cases,” the release said.

It said Ramendra Ram of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has declared two charges related to murder while rest of the candidates face one charge each.

The statement said two candidates of Garib Janata (Secular) and one each of Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist) Liberation (CPI-ML (L)), Rashtriya Lok Samata Party, RJD and five Independent candidates have declared a case related to murder in their affidavits.

Giving details of 36 candidates who have declared cases of attempt to murder, the release said CPI (ML)(L) candidate Munna Ram contesting from Mohania faces four charges, Ramendra Ram of the Bahujan Samaj Party from Chenari (SC) constituency and Prabhat Kumar Ranjan of Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) from Ghosi constituency have declared three charges.

The CPI (ML)(L) has fielded four candidates with charges related to attempt to murder and BSP has fielded three. Twelve independent candidates have each declared charges related to attempt to murder.

The release said six candidates have declared cases related to crimes against women, two about causing communal disharmony and four related to robbery and dacoity.

The release said five candidates have declared cases related to kidnapping and three candidates offence related to kidnapping for ransom.

“Eleven (69 percent) out of 16 candidates from Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), nine (69 percent) out of 13 candidates fielded by Janata Dal-United, nine (69 percent) out of 13 candidates of Rashtriya Janata Dal have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits,” the release said.

Referring to candidates with serious criminal cases, the release said that six (38 percent) out of 16 candidates from BJP, five (38 percent) out of 13 candidates fielded by JD-U, nine (69 percent) out of 13 candidates of RJD and 31 (21 percent) out of 146 Independent candidates were among those who have declared serious criminal cases.

It said 23 constituencies in the second phase of Bihar assembly elections have three or more candidates with declared criminal cases.

“Aurangabad constituency with nine candidates has the highest number of candidates who have self-declared criminal cases,” it said.

The release said nine of 16 (56 percent) fielded by BJP, 10 (77 percent) out of 13 candidates from JD(U), 8 out of 13 (62 percent) candidates from the RJD, eight out of 19 candidates (42 percent) fielded by SP, three out of 6 candidates (50 percent) of Congress and four out of 13 (31 percent) candidates of the CPI were among those having declared assets worth more than Rs.1 crore.

Average assets, it said, per candidate for 16 BJP candidates was Rs 4.19 crores, 32 BSP candidates have average assets of Rs 2.78 crores, 13 JD-U candidates have average assets worth of Rs 1.65 crores, six Congress candidates have average assets worth Rs 1.44 crores and 13 RJD candidates have average assets worth of Rs 1.89 crores.

 

(IANS)

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Why JDU & BJP Coalition Will Remain Intact

JDU knows that this 15-16% votes is not enough to help the party and for the BJP too, only the 17% votes of upper castes are not sufficient

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Nitish Kumar with Narendra Modi.
Nitish Kumar with Narendra Modi.

By Sagarneel Sinha

There have been lots of discussions among the political circles that JDU led by Bihar Chief
Minister Nitish Kumar is upset with the BJP and trying to send signals to erst allies — RJD and the Congress. This led to speculations that Nitish may once again join the Grand Alliance (GA) leaving the NDA camp. Already, RJD’s new commander Tejasvi Yadav has clearly stated that Nitish led JDU will not be welcomed in the GA. Despite all the odds, if (suppose) GA partners accommodate Nitish, he wouldn’t be the driving force of the alliance as in 2015. Also, Nitish cannot afford to go alone like in 2014 when his party fetched only 2 seats!

Then which is the correct way for JDU? It is to go with the BJP in the upcoming 2019 polls.
JDU’s advantage in this case is the present situation of the BJP. Currently, the saffron party is not in a strong position as the party would be facing anti-incumbency from a strong RJD led alliance in the state. BJP’s traditional voters are the upper castes who account for 17% of the electorate. This votebank is not enough for the party to help to win elections. The main opposition party — RJD still commands over a larger votebank than BJP. RJD is still a dominant force among the Yadavs and the Muslims who account for 31% of the population. It means BJP has to minus the 31% votes and rely on the rest — 69%. Out of these, 16% are the Mahadalits — a large portion of whom generally hail Nitish Kumar as their leader. Also, there are Kurmis, an OBC group consisting of 4% votes — considered as the supporters of JDU. Nitish Kumar himself is also a Kurmi.

Nitish Kumar Invited to Join NDA by Amit Shah After JDU-BJP Tie-up in Bihar
Nitish Kumar Invited to Join NDA by Amit Shah After JDU-BJP Tie-up in Bihar.

JDU knows that this 15-16% votes is not enough to help the party and for the BJP too, only the 17% votes of upper castes are not sufficient. However, if these votebanks are joined together they form around 31-32%. Plus, to gain the extra votes, both the parties have the option to rely on the personal charisma of Nitish Kumar and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. However, there is a power tussle between the two allies to get a respectable share of seats.

This power tussle is because of a strong BJP which earlier used to be a junior ally. The 2014 Lok Sabha elections changed the political scenario of the state where BJP emerged as the largest party in terms of vote share and seats. JDU knows the reality of a new emerging BJP, though it is pushing hard to gain a respectable share of seats for the Lok Sabha elections. Instead, Nitish Kumar has another option — giving the bigger chunk to the BJP for the Lok Sabha elections and the latter playing the junior partner for the 2020 assembly elections if held timely. Given the current situation in the country, in a crucial state like Bihar, BJP can hardly reject JDU as the later still commands over 15-16% votes — a very crucial votebank for winning maximum seats in the 2019 polls. Importance of JDU can also be explained by BJP president Amit Shah’s visit to Patna to have breakfast and dinner with Nitish Kumar. Though in politics there are no permanent friends or foes, so any perfect prediction is impossible. But given the current situation, JDU and BJP parting their ways seems unlikely as both the parties are in need of each other as already highlighted by Amit Shah that the two allies would fight the Lok Sabha elections together. Smiling face of Nitish Kumar was also an indication that the meetings with Amit Shah were fine.