Maoists, criminals and scamsters in fray for first phase of Jharkhand polls

Maoist commanders, murder and sexual assault accused, ex-gangsters and scamsters are in the ring as the polls get off on November 30, Saturday.

Published: 30th November 2019 02:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th November 2019 10:41 AM   |  A+A-

Officials carry election material as they leave for their polling stations ahead of the Jharkhand Assembly elections in Latehar district Friday Nov. 29 2019. (Photo | PTI)

Officials carry election material as they leave for their polling stations ahead of the Jharkhand Assembly elections in Latehar district Friday Nov. 29 2019. (Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

RANCHI: Candidates in the fray in Jharkhand Assembly polls make for a ‘deadly mix.’

Maoist commanders, murder and sexual assault accused, ex-gangsters and scamsters are in the ring as the polls get off on November 30, Saturday.

Advocate Rajiv Kumar who has filed several PIL’s against corrupt leaders in the Jharkhand High Court believes there has been a tacit understanding between political parties and crime syndicates.

“Madhu Koda is involved in multi-crore coal block allocation scam, AJSU Chief Sudesh Mahto in a construction scam and even CM Raghubar Das has been accused of a sewerage- drainage scam,” said Kumar. 

In fact, murder accused Shashi Bhushan Mehta, Dhullu Mahto, who has 28 criminal cases against him and surrendered Maoist Kundan Pahan, involved in over 100 incidents of loot, murder and extortion, are also in the ring.

“This is the first state in the country where a charge sheet was filed against political horse trading,” he reminds. BJP leader Saryu Roy, known as an incorruptible politician, was denied a ticket as he who had raised the ‘drain scam.’

Durga Oraon, anti-corruption crusader who nailed former CM Madhu Koda and his cabinet colleagues, believes, “It has always been a difficult fight.” In 2008, Oraon filed a case against disproportionate assets of several ministers in Jharkhand HC which led to CBI booking former CM Koda, his cabinet colleagues Kamlesh Kumar Singh, Bhanu Pratap Shahi, Harinarayan Rai, Enos Ekka and Bandhu Tirkey. Many of them are again in the poll ring this time. 

BJP candidate for Panki, Shashi Bhushan Mehta faces 11 criminal cases, including murder.

Dhullo Mahto has cases of extortion and sexual assault, while BJP’s Bhanu Pratap Shahi was arrested in the Rs 130 crore medicine scam in 2011.

An affidavit submitted by Jharkhand Police in the court said 62 MLAs have criminal cases against them, of whom 43 are yet to prove innocence.

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