The number of MLAs with criminal backgrounds in Punjab is slightly less this time, as compared to the previous assembly. Of the 117 members elected to the Vidhan Sabha on Saturday, 16 have criminal cases registered against them as against the 19 that made it to the assembly in 2012.
However, 11 of these 16 legislators have serious charges against them, with three of them even facing charges of murder and attempt to murder. In 2012, there were five MLAs facing serious charges.
The data of election results, analysed by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), reveals that nine of the total 77 Congress MLAs, four of the 20 AAP legislators and one of the 15 SAD MLAs have a criminal background.
Simarjeet Bains of the Lok Insaaf Party (LIP) has six criminal cases registered against him. He is facing cases of attempt to theft, criminal intimidation, murder, dacoity and also of obstructing public servant from performing duty.
Captain Amarinder Singh, who will be sworn as chief minister on Thursday, has four cases registered against him, including those of forgery, criminal breach of trust, cheating and destruction of evidence. Charges have not been framed against him in any of these cases.
Balwinder Singh Bains of LIP has two criminal cases registered against him in which charges have been framed.
Navjot Singh Sidhu (Cong) is facing charges related to murder with his appeal pending in the Supreme Court.
Gurpreet Singh Kangar (Cong) has two cases registered against him, including that of attempt to murder. Sanjeev Talwar (Cong) has one case registered against him by the vigilance bureau in 2011.
Among others facing criminal cases are Sukhpal Singh Bhullar of Congress (1 cheating case) and Joginder Pal (Congress).
Sunam MLA Aman Arora (AAP) is facing a case of house trespass while Congress’s Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria of Raja Sansi is facing a 30-year-old case for kidnapping a woman.
NK Sharma (SAD) of Dera Bassi is also facing one criminal case against him while AAP’s Kanwar Sandhu is facing defamation charges in a case.
Some other legislators facing criminal cases are Santokh Singh (Cong), Vijay Inder Singla (Cong), Sukhpal Singh Khaira (AAP) and Baljinder Kaur (AAP).