Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) candidate B.M. Farooq with a declared assets of around Rs 770 crore is the richest of the five aspirants in the fray for biennial elections to the four Rajya Sabha seats from Karnataka.
According to affidavits filed with the Election Commission (EC), Farooq, (51), has declared assets of about Rs 770 crore, including immovable ones worth over Rs 600 crore, and a bank balance of about Rs 95 lakh.
He is pitted against Congressmen L Hanumanthaiah, GC Chandrashekar and Syed Nasir Hussain, and Bharatiya Janata Party's Rajeev Chandrasekhar who is seeking a second term since his first term as an Independent member ends on April 2.
This is the second consecutive time Farooq is heading into the Rajya Sabha polls as the richest candidate. Farooq, who was the JD(S) candidate in the last elections to the Rajya Sabha in 2016 was denied a seat after cross-voting by JD(S) MLAs.
BJP's Chandrasekhar, (53), is the second richest candidate with declared assets of about Rs 50 crore and bank deposits of about Rs 4.8 crore.
Chandrashekhar has been MP twice before, first in 2006 and then in 2012 as an independent candidate. He got the support of the BJP and JD(S) on both occasions. He is also the founder and chairman of Jupiter Capital Pvt. Ltd, a financial services and investment company. He has invested in numerous media companies including Asianet News and Republic TV, in which he is the largest investor.
Hanumanthaiah, GC Chandrashekar and Hussain have declared assets of about Rs 4.8 crore, Rs 13 crore and Rs 18.7 crore, respectively.
The March 23 Rajya Sabha elections will fill vacancies due to retirement of Basawaraj Patil, Rahman Khan and R. Ramakrishna of the Congress and Rajeev Chandrasekhar.
Counting of votes will also be held on March 23.