Home India Local News Mizoram election: Candidates with deep pockets in fray to wrest power this time

Mizoram election: Candidates with deep pockets in fray to wrest power this time

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Out of power for a decade, the principal challenger to Congress in the upcoming Mizoram assembly election, the Mizo National Front (MNF) seems to be banking on moneybags to wrest power in the state. The average assets declared by MNF candidates stands at a staggering Rs 7.21 crore, much higher than the ruling Congress that has been in power since 2008.

In fact, the top two richest candidates in the fray also happen to be from the MNF. The Mizoram Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) have analysed the self-sworn affidavits of all 209 candidates, who are contesting in the upcoming election.

Deep pockets

Analysis of the financial details shared by the candidates has thrown an interesting picture. Out of the 209 candidates, 116 (56 per cent) are crorepatis. In 2013, out of 142 candidates, 75 (53 per cent) were crorepati.

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Among the major parties, 17 out of 39 candidates (44 per cent) of the BJP have declared assets more than Rs 1 crore. The figure for Congress is 33 out of 40 candidates (83 per cent), and for the MNF, it is 35 out of 40 candidates (88 per cent).

On an average, each candidate contesting in the Mizoram assembly elections has assets worth Rs 3.11 crore. In 2013, the average assets per candidate were worth Rs 2.31 crore. Among major parties, the average assets per candidate for 39 BJP candidates is Rs 1.66 crore, for 40 Congress candidates is Rs 3.31 crore and for 40 MNF candidates the average assets is worth Rs 7.21 crore.

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Among the top three candidates with highest declared assets contesting in the polls, two belong to the Mizo National Front. Lalrinliana Sailo of the MNF has declared total assists worth more than Rs 100 crore. Sailo, who recently quit Congress to join MNF, was a minister in the previous government and is candidate from Hachhek constituency.

Candidate from Aizwal East II constituency and owner of the Aizwal FC soccer club, Robert Romawia Royte, also from the MNF, happens to be the second richest candidate with Rs 44 crore of declared assets. Royte is contesting assembly polls for the first time. Meanwhile, Independent candidate C Laltanpuia from East Tuipui is the third richest candidate with assets worth Rs 30 crore.

Criminal background

Out of 209 candidates analysed, nine candidates (4 per cent) have declared criminal cases against themselves. In 2013, out of 142 candidates analysed, 3 (2 per cent) had declared criminal cases against themselves.

Out of the nine candidates who have declared criminal cases, four have declared serious criminal cases against themselves. In 2013, this figure was two.

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Among the major parties, two out of 39 candidates are from the BJP, three out of 40 candidates from Congress, three out of 40 candidates from MNF have declared criminal cases against themselves in their affidavits.

Educational background

As many as 60 candidates (29 per cent) have declared their educational qualification to be between Class 5 and Class 12, while 142 (68 per cent) candidates have at least completed graduation. Only one candidate is illiterate in Mizoram.

ALSO WATCH | Saffron strategy: The rise and rise of BJP in Northeast https://www.indiatoday.in/elections/story/mizoram-election-candidates-with-deep-pockets-in-fray-to-wrest-power-this-time-1394462-2018-11-23

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