Nagaland assembly polls: 31 crorepatis in fray

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Kohima, Feb 27: There are 31 ''crorepatis'' in the fray for the Nagaland assembly election.

In a state, where there is no industry worth naming and no economy other than the government offices, the number of crorepatis are surprisingly quite high. According to the information provided by Chief Electoral Officer of Nagaland C J Pomraj, asset details of 217 candidates are available with them and topping the list is Mr S I Jamir, brother of former Chief Minister S C Jamir.The NPF are the leaders of the crorepati gang. They have 13 crorepatis while Congress eight in this highly exclusive list. Mr S I Jamir has cash and properties worth little over Rs 30 crores in his name. That included agricultural land worth Rs 25 crores and buildings worth Rs 5 crores. He has a modest bank deposit of Rs 40 thousand.

He is not alone on the top. Chief Ministerial aspirant from Congress K L Chisi is also not far behind. He has assets worth Rs 18 crores. He does not have any residential properties and just Rs 21 thousand in the bank, but his non residential property is worth Rs 13.16 crore and has agricultural land of Rs 5 crores.

In comparison to that, the just ousted Chief Minister Neiphu Rio has properties worth Rs 4.27 crore. His agricultural land is valued for Rs 1 crore while his residential properties are valued at a staggering Rs 3.27 crore.

As far as the residential properties are concerned Mr Rio is at number three. The list is headed by another candidate Tokhebo who has residential property worth Rs 6 crore.

Mr Rio's main challenger and Chief Ministerial aspirant from Congress I Imkong is also not far behind. He has Rs 5 lakh in cash, another Rs 7.22 lakh in bank deposit and then agricultural land worth Rs 4.55 crores.

That is not the end of his list of the assets. His non agricultural land is worth Rs 3.10 crores but his residential property worth a modest Rs 44 lakh.

This is noteworthy as an average Naga house cost just over Rs 2 lakh in urban areas and below Rs 50,000 in the rural areas.

The list is more interesting when a look at the bank deposits are concerned. Nagas are traditionally averse with banking instruments and they do not park their money there. Hence out of the 31 crorepotis only 11 of them have more than a lakh in the banks.

The highest deposit in the bank is Rs 70 lakh by Kheikho Zhimoni, who surprisingly also has Rs 50,000 in cash and a house worth Rs 87 lakh. But most of the candidates have very modest amount in the bank.

It is quite evident that Nagas believe in properties and agricultural land and they have invested heavily in these two areas or inherited vast tract of lands by default. This is noteworthy that there is no income tax in Nagaland and none of these crorepatis have to pay any income tax as special laws are effective in the state.


UNI

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