Over 100 candidates out of the total 845 contestants in the April 24 Lok Sabha polls in Tamil Nadu have criminal cases against them.
Of these, 53 candidates or six percent face serious criminal charges relating to murder, attempt to murder and kidnapping, according to a survey by Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) and Tamil Nadu Election Watch.
The findings were taken from data given by candidates to the Election Commission.
Candidates with criminal cases against them are contesting from all 39 constituencies in Tamil Nadu, with more than three of them in 18 seats, which ADR has termed as ‘red alert constituencies’.
While two have declared they have cases against them related to murder (Section 302 of the IPC), 14 candidates have declared cases related to attempt to murder (Section 307 of the IPC) against them, according to the ADR.
Five candidates face sedition charges against them (Sec 124A of IPC) and seven have been named in cases related to kidnapping, it said.
The survey also found 150 candidates are post graduates, while others are Class X pass (121), graduates (115), Graduate Professional (102), Class VIII pass (96) among others.
A total of 21 have declared themselves illiterate and 17 as literate – only know to read and write.
Most candidates (259) are between 41 and 50 years of age, followed by 228 (between 31 and 40) and 173 are aged between 51 and 60, it said.
A total of 103 candidates are aged between 61 and 70, another 23 between 71 and 80. A meagre 58 candidates alone are aged between 25 and 30.