Kolkata: As many as 26 candidates with criminal cases and 41 crorepatis (multimillionaires) including independent nominee Shamali Das who has assets worth over Rs.2,000 crore are in the fray for the fifth and last phase of Lok Sabha polls in West Bengal.
With 187 candidates vying for honours, 17 constituencies spread across six districts of Murshidabad, Nadia, North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas, Kolkata and East Midnapore go the polls May 12 in the last phase of the 2014 general elections.
According to West Bengal Election Watch - a civil society initiative aiming at electoral reforms - of the 26 with criminal cases, 15 candidates face serious charges like murder, attempt to murder and kidnapping.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (six) and ruling Trinamool Congress (five) have the most number of candidates with criminal background, followed by four from the Communist Party of India-Marxist and three from the Congress.
Congress MP from Baharampur in Murshidabad Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury is the lone candidate to face murder charges.