The Economic Times
As many as 109 candidates contesting the first phase of UP assembly elections have criminal cases pending against them, according to a monitoring group.

Of the total 867 candidates in fray for the first phase slated for February 8, UP Election Watch ( UPEW), which analysed affidavits of 284 contestants, found that 109 of them have criminal cases, including that of murder, abduction, robbery and extortion, pending against them.

SP tops the chart with 28 candidates having criminal record, followed by BSP and BJP at 24 each, Congress (15), Peace Party (12), JD-U (5) and RLD (1).

About 13% of candidates in three states haven't given PAN card details. In UP, 96 candidates (34%) out of 284 candidates, contesting in Round 1, have declared that they have never filed I-T returns.

Among these UP candidates with maximum assets are Farid Mahfuz Kidwai of SP contesting from Kursi with assets of 3.52 cr, followed by Congress' Gauri Sankar from Mahadewa with assets of 2.8cr & Ram Sajivan of BJP from Ram Nagar with 2.57 cr assets.

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