Karnataka Bypolls: Turncoats get richer in a year

Between April 2018 and now, the movable assets of BJP's Vijayanagar candidate Anand Singh grew two-fold, from Rs 25.91 crore to Rs 50.33 crore.

Disqualified legislators who defected from the Congress and the JD(S) to jump ship to the BJP have become richer since April 2018, according to their election affidavits.

The poorest of the lot is A H Vishwanath whose affidavit shows his fortunes have dwindled. 

BJP's KR Puram candidate Byrathi Basavaraj owns luxury watches worth Rs 86.86 lakh, including five Rolex pieces worth Rs 86.2 lakh. His overall net worth, including a fleet of luxury cars, is Rs 93.44 crore.

Between April 2018 and now, the movable assets of BJP's Vijayanagar candidate Anand Singh grew two-fold, from Rs 25.91 crore to Rs 50.33 crore. In contrast, Singh's immovable assets witnessed a fractional decline, from Rs 45.44 crore last year to Rs 45.05 crore.

The combined worth of movable and immovable assets of BJP's B C Patil (Hirekerur) and Narayana Gowda (KR Pet) saw a near-exponential increase. While Patil's assets grew by around 40% (from Rs 4.73 crore to Rs 6.59 crore), Gowda's wealth grew from Rs 6.54 crore to 10.74 crore. During the past year, Gowda, according to his affidavit, acquired a property worth Rs 7.19 crore.

The wealth of party-hopper Vishwanath, the former JD(S) president, dropped by over 60% — from a combined worth of Rs 2.4 crore last year to Rs 77.05 lakh. It may be recalled that JD(S) leaders had accused him of defecting because of his poor financial state.

At Hoskote, BJP's M T B Nagaraj has grown richer by over Rs 160 crore as his wealth went up from Rs 1,015.43 crore to Rs 1,223 crore. 

At Gokak, where three Jarkiholi brothers filed their nominations, affidavits showed that all of them are equally wealthy. The youngest — Lakhan Jarkiholi — is marginally richer than his brothers. Lakhan is up against Ramesh Jarkiholi. 

Criminal cases

Singh from Vijayanagar, according to his affidavit, has 15 criminal cases against him filed by the Special Investigation Team, CBI and Forest Department. Similarly, there are cases against Basavaraj at the Land Grab Court and Lokayukta court.

The disqualified MLAs have been given tickets by the BJP for the December 5 bypolls. The ruling BJP must win at least 7-8 seats to secure a majority in the Assembly.

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