Criminal Record of Candidates: In the third phase of Lok Sabha election, Congress and BJP have given tickets to large number of candidates with criminal background.
Candidates with criminal cases: No major political party can claim that it has not given tickets to candidates with criminal cases in this Lok Sabha election. However, some of them definitely have no qualms in fielding candidates with criminal background in large numbers. Criminalization of politics is more applicable to big national parties and powerful regional parties.
In terms of total number of candidates with criminal records in the third phase of Lok Sabha election, Indian National Congress tops the list as 40 of its total 90 candidates (over 44% candidates) in this phase have declared criminal cases listed against them. The Congress is followed by ruling BJP as 38 of total 97 BJP candidates (39%) have declared criminal record in their election affidavits. These two parties are followed by BSP which has fielded 11 candidates with criminal record in this phase. While 7 CPM candidates have declared criminal records, Shiv Sena has also fielded 7 such candidates, NCP has fielded 6 candidates with criminal record, followed by Samajwadi Party 5 candidates and All India Trinamool Congress 4 candidates.
Candidates involved in serious cases
However, in case of candidates with serious criminal cases like rape, murder and attempt to murder and other such cases where the crime will attract imprisonment of five years of more, the BJP tops the list as 26 of its 97 candidates in the third phase are facing serious criminal charges. The party is followed by the Congress (27 of 90 candidates), BSP (9 of 92 candidates), Shiv Sena (6 of 22 candidates), CPM (6 of 19 candidates), NCP (5 of 10), Samajwadi Party (4 of 10), and All India Trinamool Congress (4 of 9 candidates).
In terms of percentage of candidates with criminal record, NCP tops the list as 60% or 6 of total 10 NCP candidates in this phase have declared criminal cases pending against them. Similarly, in terms of candidate accused of committing serious crimes as a percentage of total candidates fielded by a political party, NCP again tops the list as every other NCP candidate in the the third phase is facing serious charges that attract imprisonment of five years or more. NCP is followed by CPM, Samajwadi Party and All India Trinamool Congress, according to a survey conducted by Association for Democratic Reforms.
More than half of the Lok Sabha seats (63 of total 15) in the third phase of general election 2019 have been designated as dangerous or red-alert constituencies as three or more candidates in these constituencies have declared criminal cases pending against them.