Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu and two of his TDP colleagues are among the richest candidates contesting the assembly elections in the southern state, according to the political data-crunching non-profit ADR. Chandrababu Naidu, who heads the Telugu Desam Party, is the third-richest candidate in the state elections with declared assets worth Rs 668.57 crore.
The richest candidate among the three is Krishnaiah Bollineni, who declared assets worth Rs 689 crore. The second-richest is TDP leader P Narayana, who declared a total of Rs 668.61 crore, just a few crores more than the chief minister.
YSR Congress Party chief Jagan Mohan Reddy declared Rs 510.38 crore assets.
The TDP's has 172 candidates with an average wealth of Rs 32.39 crore, according to the non-profit Association of Democratic Reforms. The YSR Congress has 171 candidates with an average wealth of Rs 21.26 crore.
Of the 2,007 candidates in the Andhra Pradesh assembly elections, 632 or 32 per cent are crorepatis.
The report by ADR said 54 candidates have declared zero assets.
Chandrababu Naidu walked out of the National Democratic Alliance in March last year over financial support for Andhra Pradesh. Special category status would mean a large infusion of central funds to help with the state government develop industry and infrastructure.
On Sunday, Jagan Mohan Reddy had said Prime Minister Narendra Modi may have done far better in the rest of the country, but in Andhra Pradesh he is portrayed as someone who betrayed the state by not giving it special category status to help the state stand on its own feet after the bifurcation in 2014 that led to the creation of Telangana.
"Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) might be scoring well all over the country. Probably, he has exhibited a stronger will than any other prime minister. Maybe he has done far better. But as far as Andhra Pradesh is concerned, he doesn't score well," Mr Reddy had told NDTV.
"As far as Andhra Pradesh is concerned, he would be portrayed as someone who betrayed our state, as Rahul Gandhi is also projected," he had said.
Andhra Pradesh will vote on April 11. Results will be out on May 23.