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इंडियन आवाज़     23 May 2024 09:26:17      انڈین آواز

20% of candidates contesting Phase-5 LS polls in Odisha face serious criminal cases

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WEB DESK

At least eight out of 40 candidates contesting the upcoming Phase-5 of Lok Sabha elections from Odisha are facing serious criminal charges with a 20% overall rate, a report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and the Odisha Election Watch (OEW) stated on Sunday.

Additionally, 12 candidates, constituting 30% of the total, have declared criminal cases pending against them, the report said.

The OEW and the ADR analysed the self-sworn affidavits of all 40 candidates, who are contesting the following 5 constituencies in the Odisha Phase-II and Lok sabha phase V elections 2024.

Aska, Bargarh, Bolangir, Kandhamal and Sundargarh parliamentary constituencies are going to polls on 20 May in the fifth phase of the nationwide election.

Out of 40 candidates analysed, 12 (30%) candidates have declared criminal cases against themselves while 8 (20%) candidates have declared serious criminal cases against themselves.

The criteria for serious criminal cases, according to the report, includes offences for which the maximum punishment is of 5 years or more and whether an offence is non-bailable in nature.

The electoral offence (IPC 171E or bribery), offence related to loss to exchequer, assault, murder, kidnap, rape-related cases, offences under the Representation of the People Act (Section 8), offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act besides crimes against women are also categorised as serious criminal offences, the ADR report said.

While one candidate has declared cases related to murder (IPC Section 302) against himself, 4 candidates have declared cases related to attempt to murder (IPC Section 307) against themselves.

Furthermore, four candidates have declared cases related to crime against women.

While four (80%) out of 5 BJP candidates have declared criminal cases in their election affidavit, 20% of candidates of the BJD and the Congress in the fray in the 5th phase LS polls are facing criminal cases pending against them.

Similarly, one candidate each from the BJP and the Congress are facing serious criminal cases as per the affidavit submitted by them in the nomination papers, the ADR report concluded.

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