The Economic Times

Election candidates in Punjab may be among the "richest" in the state, but as many as 10 of them have never filed the income tax returns, according to an NGO report.

The 10 candidates, who declared "massive" assets in their affidavits while filling nomination papers for the January 30 Assembly election, have never filed I-T returns, according to a report prepared by NGO Punjab Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms.

Leading the list of such candidates is Congress' Muktsar candidate Karan Kaur, the richest candidate with assets worth Rs 128 crore.

According to the report, Karan Kaur, daughter-in-law of former Punjab Chief Minister late Harcharan Singh Brar, never filed the I-T return though she has declared her PAN number.

Kaur is followed by Congress candidate Ramanjit Singh Sikki, who boasts assets to the tune of Rs 20.12 crore. The list names other candidates Gurpartap Singh Wadala of SAD from Nakodar who declared assets of Rs 13.71 crore.

The report further highlights that out of total 408 candidates analysed, 92 candidates declared that they had never filed tax returns. Out of these, Congress had 15 such candidates, followed by 11 of SAD and 20 of PPP and 27 of BSP.

Moreover, it was also discovered that 47 out of 408 candidates have not declared their PAN details for the upcoming Assembly polls. Meanwhile, high profile candidates with huge assets also have declared hefty income in their I-T returns.

Topping the list is Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who has shown highest annual income of Rs 4.58 crore for 2010-11 in his return. He is followed by his father and Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal (SAD) with income of Rs 2 crore and then Congress candidate Rana Gurjit Singh from Kapurthala with Rs 1.59 crore annual income.

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