Sanchari Ghosh

A report by ADR and National Election Watch reveals alarming statistics: 21% of Phase 2 Lok Sabha candidates face criminal cases, including murder charges. Phase 1 data shows similar trends, with hate speech and crimes against women

In a concerning revelation, a report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch has noted an alarming prevalence of criminal cases among candidates contesting the Lok Sabha elections. 

According to the report, a staggering 21% of the 1192 candidates contesting in Phase 2 of the Lok Sabha elections have declared criminal cases against them.

The report further said that out of these candidates, 167 (14%) are facing serious criminal charges. A total of 32 candidates have declared cases where they have been convicted. Three candidates have declared cases related to murder (IPC Section -302) against them.

Data from the ADR analysis from Phase 1:

The Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and National Election Watch have analyzed the self-sworn affidavits of 1,618 candidates out of the 1,625 candidates contesting the elections in Phase 1 on April 19.

Out of 1,618 candidates, 16% (252) face criminal cases and 10% (161) serious charges. Seven have murder cases and 19 have attempt to murder cases.

Furthermore, the report highlights that 42 out of the 102 Lok Sabha seats slated for Phase 1 are contested by three or more candidates facing criminal charges. Additionally, 18 candidates have declared cases related to crimes against women, including one candidate facing a rape charge under section 376 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

In another concerning finding, the report notes that 35 candidates are linked to cases of hate speech.

The report also categorizes 41% of the seats to be contested in Phase 1 as 'red alert' constituencies, where three or more candidates have declared criminal cases in their affidavits.

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