84.6% contestants lost security deposits in 2009 general elections

About 84.6 per cent contestants failed to get a minimum of one-sixth of the total valid votes polled in 2009 general elections, hence lost their security deposits.

Out of 8,070 contestants in the fray 6,829 could not save their deposits, according to figures provided by the Election Commission.

According to the Election Commission of India rules, a candidate for Lok Sabha elections has to make a deposit of Rs25,000 at the time of filing the nomination.

Candidates from the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes need to pay half of this amount. If the candidate fails to get a minimum of one-sixth of the total valid votes polled, the deposit goes to the treasury.

Of total 8,070 contestants for 543 Lok Sabha seats, 1,623 were from the national parties, 394 from state parties, 2,222 from the unrecognised registered parties while 3,831 were independents.

Amongst those who lost their security deposits, 779 were from the national parties, 80 from the state parties, 2,164 from the unrecognised registered parties and 3,806 independents.

This meant that roughly, one out of two aspirants from national parties and every fifth aspirant from state parties could not save their deposits. Also, only 25 independents out of 3,831 could secure the requisite number of votes to save their deposits. Overall, a whopping 84.6 per cent of the candidates lost their security deposits.

Percentage-wise, about 48 per cent of the seven national parties (BJP, BSP, CPI, CPM, INC, NCP and RJD), 20.3 per cent of the state parties, 97.38 per cent of unrecognised registered parties and 99.34 per cent of the independent aspirants lost their security money during the 2009 general elections.

Uttar Pradesh topped the list with 1,155 candidates losing their deposits during 2009 general elections. In the state 1,368 candidates were in race for 80 seats, of which 242 were from seven national parties, 75 from state parties, 488 from unrecognised registered parties and 563 remaining were independents.

Out of these, 95 from the national parties, 19 from the state parties and 479 from unrecognised registered parties lost their deposits. Interestingly, all but one of the 563 independent aspirants forfeited their security money.

After Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu had the most number of losing candidates, where out of 823 candidates who contested for 39 Lok Sabha seats 745 lost their security deposits.

Out of 76 candidates belonging to national parties, 55 lost their deposits while all the 55 candidates from state parties could save their deposits. Only two out of 164 candidates from unrecognised registered parties could save their deposits whereas all 528 independents lost their deposits.

Not far behind was Maharashtra where out of 819 candidates in race for 48 Lok Sabha seats, 705 candidates forfeited their security deposits. While only five out of 410 independents got the requisite number of votes to save their deposits, 53 from the national parties and one from state parties lost their security money in Maharashtra.

In Bihar and Andhra Pradesh, 583 and 468 candidates, respectively, forfeited their security deposits. In Madhya Pradesh, out of 429 candidates contested for 29 seats, 368 candidates forfeited their deposits. In Karnataka where 427 candidates contested 28 Lok Sabha seats, 362 lost their deposits in the 2009 general elections.