Politicians with criminal backgrounds should not be allowed to make laws : Supreme Court

Cases against MPs and MLAs cannot be withdrawn without the permission of the High Court

Editor’s comment

  • Why do Courts need to tell this ? How are the politicians with the criminal background given party membership ? Why are they given various positions in the party ?

New Delhi – The risk of criminalising the political system is increasing. For maintaining purity, Politicians with criminal backgrounds should not be allowed to make laws; but our hands are tied. We cannot transgress into the area reserved for the legislative arm of the State. The Supreme Court slammed the politicians, saying they could only appeal to the conscience of lawmakers.

The Court this time ruled that the cases against MPs and MLAs could not be withdrawn without the permission of the High Court. It also directed the Registrar General of all High Courts to inform the Chief Justice of the High Court of pending cases against MPs and MLAs in their area. The CBI Court and other Courts should continue hearing the pending cases against MPs and MLAs. The judge hearing the case should not be transferred till further order. The Supreme Court will set up a Special Bench to oversee such cases.

Court appeal has fallen on the deaf ears of lawmakers!

This Court, time and again, has appealed to the lawmakers of the country to rise to the occasion and take steps for bringing out necessary amendments. All these appeals have fallen on the deaf ears. The political parties refuse to wake up from deep slumber due to greed for victory. It is hoped that they will awake early and carry out a major surgery to end the practice of criminalising politicians. (It is futile to expect this from corrupt political parties. People expect the Court to take the initiative – Editor)

Political Parties must publish criminal antecedents of candidates within 48 Hours of their selection, and the Election Commission should make an app

  • Supreme Court has ordered to publish criminal antecedent of the candidate within 48 hours of his selection and publish it on their main web page. This information should be published under the heading “Details of Politician with Criminal background”. Due to this, the voters will get information about them.
  • The ECI is directed to create a dedicated mobile application containing information published by candidates regarding their criminal antecedents so that at one stroke, a voter gets such information on his/her mobile phone.
  • The ECI is directed to carry out an extensive awareness campaign to make every voter aware of his right to know and the availability of information. This shall be done across various platforms, including social media, websites, TV ads, prime time debates, pamphlets, etc.
  • If the political parties do not comply with the court order and the Election Commission notifies the Court immediately, then the Court will take stern action.
  • The Election Commission should set up a separate branch to monitor political parties

The Uttar Pradesh Government has withdrawn over 800 lawsuits

According to a report submitted to the Supreme Court, as of September 2020, 4,859 lawsuits against the former MP MLA were pending in Uttar Pradesh. Of these, more than 800 cases have been withdrawn. Some of them are about rioting. The State Government had said in a special session in December 2017 that it was preparing to withdraw the cases filed on politicians in connection with the agitation.

The names of the candidates with criminal images were published in newspapers with low distribution !

The Court said that to avoid contempt of the Court, political parties published information about candidates with criminal images in dailies whose circulation was low. We had not only ordered to publish this information in a newspaper with a high circulation but also ordered to disseminate information in the media. Political parties should not repeat such a mistake in the future. Follow the order properly.

Penalties for 8 political parties that do not disclose criminal information

The Supreme Court has fined eight political parties for failing to disclose criminal information of candidates during the Bihar elections. ₹5 lakh fine imposed on CPI(M) & NCP and ₹1 lakh fine on BJP, INC, Janta Dal, RJD, CPI & LJP.