Know your neta: Newcomers to neo-rich - The New Indian Express

Know your neta: Newcomers to neo-rich

Published: 24th Nov 2013 07:28:03 AM

Politics is a rich man’s game, goes the old saying, and if one is in politics in Delhi one better be rich, and powerful. A glance through the candidates’ list of Congress and BJP will give one an idea of how wealth plays an important role in political success.

In the BJP, Dwarka legislator Pradyuman Rajput is reportedly the richest candidate contesting polls; his moveable and immovable assets total a little over Rs. 12 crore. On the other hand, Devender Yadav, who is contesting from Badli on a Congress ticket, is reportedly the party’s richest candidate and has movable and immovable assets worth `26 crore.

Among the crorepati candidates contesting the polls on Congress tickets are Prahlad Singh Sawhney who is contesting from Jangpura and has immovable and movable assets worth around `20 crore. He is followed by Somesh Shokeen contesting from Matiala, who has moveable and immovable assets worth around `18 crore. Similarly, RK Puram candidate Barkha Singh’s moveable and immovable assets total a little over `21 crore; Tarwinder Singh Marwah, who is contesting from Jangpura, has immovable and movable assets worth `9.5 crore

BJP’s crorepati club includes Dharam Dev Solanki, who is contesting from Palam and has a net worth of `9 crore; Krishan Tyagi, who is contesting from Burari, is worth Rs. 12.5 crore.

However, the crown of the richest candidate goes to Manjinder Singh Sirsa of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), who is contesting from Rajouri Garden. Sirsa, who has a new worth of `104 crore, loves good life; he owns a fleet of swanky cars that include Bentley, Range Rover, Mercedes Benz, Volkswagen Touareg, Audi, Land Cruiser and Toyota Innova.

Dhiraj Kumar Tokas of the BSP is the second richest candidate. With a net worth of around Rs. 100 crore, he is contesting from RK Puram.

As far as age goes, the Congress’s youngest candidate is 28-year-old Amrita Dhawan who is fielded in Tilak Nagar constituency whereas Hem Prakash Bagra, 27, is the youngest among the BJP’s contestants. Bagra is contesting from Sultanpur Mazra constituency. Similarly, the BJP’s oldest candidate is 70-year-old Jagdish Mukhi who is fighting poll from Janakpuri. His counterpart from the Grand Old Party is Chaudhury Prem Singh, 80, who is contesting from Ambedkar Nagar.

In India, it seems, crime and politics go hand in hand. With winnability growing to be the sole criterion in politics, issues like criminal record takes a back seat. The Congress has gone ahead and fielded Asif Mohammed Khan from Okhla, who faces criminal charges like attempt to murder, buying and disposing slaves, promoting enmity between groups and religion. He is facing more than a dozen cases. BJP candidate Naresh Gaur, who is contesting from Babarpur, is facing three cases with charges of theft, voluntarily causing hurt and criminal trespass.

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