Pradeep Sharma, current Shiv Sena candidate from Nalasopara and former encounter specialist from Mumbai Police has declared assets worth Rs. 36.21 crores in his poll affidavit.
Though Sharma isn't the only crorepati cop in the political field. Former police inspectors, Shamsher Khan Pathan and Gautam Gaikwad with assets worth R4.87 crore and Rs 3.21 crore respectively are also in the political battlefield.
According to Pradeep Sharma’s affidavit submitted to the Election Commission, he owns movable assets worth Rs 1.81 crore and zero immovable assets, his wife Swikriti has movable assets worth Rs 14.02 crore and immovable assets worth Rs 20.37 crore. Since he had stated his income as Rs 1.64 lakh in 2015 and his wife’s income for the same year as Rs 1.02 crore in her tax returns filed in 2015-16, the numbers don't make sense.
The numbers add to the confusion as the years pass, for the financial year 2018-19 Sharma’s income shot up unusually while his wife’s income slipped down the hill swiftly. n his returns for 2018-19, he has mentioned Rs 9.83 lakh as his income, while his wife's’ has been mentioned as Rs 41.63 lakh.
The couple’s liability record is also as stunning as their fluctuating income records. The couple stated a combined liability of Rs 15.13 crore (Sharma, Rs 14.28 lakh and Swikriti Rs 14.99 crore).
In an interview with the paper Midday, Sharma’s defence was, "From 2008 to 2017, my wife and I used to run a business. The income is hard-earned money through the business. Everything has been declared to the Income Tax authorities. And, an inquiry, too, has been conducted."
He defended himself saying that his income has increased due to an appreciation in the current value of their assets.
To quote him, "For instance, the family had purchased a flat at JB Nagar in 1993. The value then was around Rs 5 lakh. The current value is around Rs 3 crore,"
Pradeep Sharma shows genuine concern for the area he is representing in the elections, he said that he wants to improve the living conditions of the people. He also said, "I am here as an alternative and to change the scenario. It is not that I am contesting polls for name and fame. Through my PS Foundation I am already helping the poor and needy. So, for me, this election is just a step to escalate my charity work and not a means to flex muscle or create wealth for myself."