1697 tainted with declared criminal cases for ‘Bhaymukht Samaj’ in 18th Lok Sabha

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The contradiction between political promises and actions is stark in Indian politics. Political bigwigs frequently promise to eradicate rampant crime and corruption once elected. However, during elections, they often nominate candidates with extensive criminal records as their first choice.
For example, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government in Uttar Pradesh launched a campaign to eliminate ‘Mafia Raaj,’ targeting notorious figures like former MP-turned-politician Atiq Ahmed, who faced nearly 150 criminal cases for murder, extortion, and other serious crimes. Despite this stance, the BJP nominated a candidate from Kerala for the Lok Sabha elections who had the highest number of declared criminal cases—243 cases lodged under 139 serious sections and 1093 other sections of IPC.
The Congress party, India’s grand old party, also follows this pattern, nominating candidates with similarly tainted backgrounds.
This paradox highlights the contradiction within political parties, as they undermine their anti-crime and anti-corruption promises by choosing candidates with significant criminal histories for electoral success

A significant 1697 contestants contesting in seven phases of the ongoing 2024 Lok Sabha polls for the 543 parliamentary seats have multiple declared criminal cases lodged against their names in which charges have also been framed in a court of law against a significant chunk of them some.

88 women candidates with declared criminal cases

Interestingly it is not only the men who have declared criminal cases lodged against their names in different police stations all over the country, the women are also not behind.

As per data made available by ADR and National Election Watch, of the total count of candidates with declared criminal cases, 88 are women candidates in fray.

Records revealed, national political parties like BJP and Congress have a significant count of such tainted on their candidate list contesting from different parliamentary constituencies, some even having declared criminal cases in hundreds lodged under serious sections of IPC.

‘Bahubali’ of all candidates with maximum declared criminal cases 

The boss of all tainted candidates presently in fray in ongoing 2024 Lok Sabha polls is one K Surendran of BJP contesting from Wayanad constituency of Kerala. He has the highest count of 243 declared criminal cases lodged under 139 serious sections of IPC besides 1093 other sections of IPC.

Second in command

The top 10 list of such grossly tainted candidates has Dr K S Radhakrishnan on the second spot. Contesting on a BJP ticket from Ernakulam constituency of Kerala, he has the second highest count of 211 declared criminal cases lodged under 5 serious sections of IPC besides 9 other sections of IPC.

Top 10 list of tainted candidates

Third such ‘dabangh’ on the list of tainted candidates is Arjun Singh with 93 declared criminal cases lodged under 236 serious sections of IPC. He is contesting on a BJP ticket from Barrackpur parliamentary constituency in West Bengal.
Further with fourth maximum number of 88 declared criminal cases lodged under 23 serious sections besides 405 other sections of IPC, Adv. Dean Kuriakose is contesting on a Congress ticket from Idukki constituency of Kerala.
Similarly, Athram Suguna of Congress with 49 declared criminal cases lodged under 41 serious sections of IPC is contesting from Adilabad (ST) constituency of Telangana while Shafi Parambil, also of Congress has 47 declared criminal cases lodged under 9 serious sections of IPC. He is contesting from Vadakara constituency of Kerala.
Further, Athram Sakku contesting on a Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) ticket from Adilabad (ST) constituency of Telangana has 47 declared criminal cases lodged under 10 serious sections of IPC.
In the infamous list of tainted Lok Sabha candidates Eatala Rajender is on the eight spot with 45 declared criminal cases lodged under 15 serious sections of IPC. He is contesting on a BJP ticket from Karimnagar constituency of Telangana while Bandi Sanjay Kumar has the ninth highest count of 42 declared criminal cases lodged under 30 serious sections of IPC. He is contesting on a BJP ticket from Karimnagar constituency of Telangana.
Bihar heavyweight Rajesh Ranjan Alias Pappu Yadav is present on tenth spot with 41 declared criminal cases lodged under 42 serious sections of IPC. He is contesting as an independent candidate from Purnia constituency of Bihar.

Candidates with criminal cases against their names

In all seven phases of ongoing Lok sabha elections, a maximum of 789 candidates have one criminal case each registered against their names while 268 candidates have 2 criminal cases each registered against their names. Similarly, 170 candidates have 3 criminal cases each registered against their names followed by 80 candidates with 4 criminal cases each registered against their names while 64 candidates have 5 criminal cases each registered against their names besides 53 candidates have 6 criminal cases each registered against their names.
Further, 22 candidates have 7 criminal cases each registered against their names while 23 candidates have 8 criminal cases each registered against their names. 18 candidates in fray have 9 criminal cases each registered against their names.

Rising count of candidates with criminal cases last four Lok Sabha

As per Prof Jagdeep Chhokar, Founder Member and Trustee, Association of Democratic Reforms, out of 8337 candidates in fray in the ongoing 2024 Lok Sabha elections, 20% candidates have declared criminal cases. “In 2009, 15% candidates had declared criminal cases which grew to 17% in 2014, 19% in 2019 and now in 2024 it is 20%,” he stated.
Referring to candidates with serious criminal cases, he stated that in 2009, 8% candidates had serious criminal cases which swelled to 11% in 2014, 13% in 2019 and now in 2024 it had increased to 14 %.

Stalwarts with declared criminal cases in fray

Apart from the lesser know candidates or first timers, some of the stalwarts in fray with declared criminal cases include Amit Shah (3 case), Shashi Tharoor (12 case), Rahul Gandhi (19 case), Asaduddin Owaisi (5 case), Kangana Ranaut (8 case), Akhilesh Yadav (3 case), Raj Babbar (3 case), Swami Prasad Maurya (9 case), Misa Bharti (6 case), Afzal Ansari (5 case), Ajay Rai (18 case), Anurag Singh Thakur (1 case), Anupriya Patel (2 case), Nishikant Dubey (8 case), Kanhaiya Kumar (5 case), Naveen Jindal (9 case), Dharmendra Yadav (4 case), Mohua Moitra (1 case), Dharmendra Pradhan (5 case), Dr Udit Raj (3 case), Sambit Patra (1 case), Dinesh Lal Yadav ‘Nirahua’ (1 case), Adhir Ranjan Chaudhary (5 case),MK Stalin (12 cases), Kanimozhi Karunanidhi (2 cases), Dayanidhi Maran (4 cases) and KC Venugopal (1 case).

Some serious sections under IPC leveled against candidates in fray

Punishment for dacoity (IPC Section-395), voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means (IPC Section 324), voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty (IPC Section-332), Attempt to commit culpable homicide (IPC Section-308), House-trespass in order to commit offence punishable with imprisonment (IPC Section-451), Voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons or means (IPC Section-326), Punishment for criminal intimidation (IPC Section-506), Attempt to murder (IPC Section-307), House-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint (IPC Section-452), Voluntarily causing grievous hurt to deter public servant from his duty (IPC Section-333), Punishment for bribery (IPC Section-171E), Causing disappearance of evidence of offence, or giving false information to screen offender (IPC Section-201), Assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty (IPC Section-354), Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc., and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony (IPC Section-153A), Punishment for undue influence or personation at an election (IPC Section-171F), voluntarily causing hurt in committing robbery (IPC Section-394), etc.

Their Speak

“PM Modi Ji has been firm on zero tolerance towards mafia Raj and therefore under CM Yogi’s leadership BJP state govt has ended mafia Raj in UP. Today people are happy and blessing BJP. Unfortunately regional parties still depend on muscle power like SP and BSP.”

Siddharth Nath Singh
BJP MLA from City North assembly constituency, Prayagraj and former Cabinet minister and UP Government spokesperson

“Criminalization of politics is a menace which is catered by many factors. Political parties in a blind race to win elections ignore candidate’s past and hence scrupulous elements make entry in politics. Until all political parties unite against the same, a ‘Bhaimukt samaj’ will remain an illusion.”

Anugrah Narain Singh
Senior Congress leader and former MLA

“ADR is committed towards creating awareness amongst voters against criminalization of politics. We conduct programmes to spread awareness. Much has to be done in coming days but I can say that gradually criminals are leaving politics while the crorepati population has witnessed a rise in politics.”

Sanjay Singh
Head (UP Chapter), Association of Democratic Reforms

Top 10 list of tainted candidates with maximum declared criminal cases

Name State Constituency Party Criminal Cases Serious IPC
K Surendran Kerala Wayanad BJP 243 139
Dr KS Radhakrishnan Kerala Ernakulam BJP 211 5
Arjun Singh WB Barrackpur BJP 93 236
Adv. Dean Kuriakose Kerala Idukki INC 88 23
Athram Suguna Telangana Adilabad (ST) INC 49 41
Shafi Parambil Kerala Vadakara INC 47 9
Athram Sakku Telangana Adilabad (ST) BRS 47 10
Eatala Rajender Telangana Karimnagar BJP 45 15
Bandi Sanjay Kumar Telangana Karimnagar BJP 42 30
Rajesh Ranjan aka Pappu Yadav Bihar Purnia IND 41 42

 

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