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1,700 MPs, MLAs booked in cases of criminal offences in last 3 years

The Union law ministry submitted the document last week, listing 3,186 registered cases against politicians, of which 3,045 cases are pending trial across the country with Uttar Pradesh topping the list.

india Updated: Mar 12, 2018 07:43 IST
MPs,MLAs,criminal offences
The Supreme Court in November last year asked the government to prepare a report card on the status of 1,581 cases pending against MLAs and MPs during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.(Sonu Mehta/HT Photo)

Over 1,700 lawmakers in Parliament and state assemblies faced cases of criminal offences between 2014 and 2017, says a government affidavit after the Supreme Court asked the Centre last November to create special courts for speedy trial of litigation against politicians.

The Union law ministry submitted the document last week, listing 3,186 registered cases against politicians, of which 3,045 cases are pending trial across the country with Uttar Pradesh topping the list.

The top court in November last year asked the government to prepare a report card on the status of 1,581 cases pending against MLAs and MPs during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

The directive came when a bench led by Justice Ranjan Gogoi was hearing a PIL filed by advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay seeking a ban on convicted politicians from contesting polls.

The court wanted to know how many cases were closed with a verdict, adhering to its March 2014 directive, which said trials must complete within a year of framing of charges.

The ministry then collated data from high courts, state governments, both Houses of Parliament — the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha — and offices of legislative assemblies to furnish the status report. It relied on the information given to it by 23 high courts; Bombay being the lone exception.

Uttar Pradesh had the highest number —248 lawmakers — facing criminal cases during the three years from 2014, followed by Tamil Nadu at 178, Bihar 144 and West Bengal 139.Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Telangana had more than 100 MPs and MLAs, whose names figured in the FIR.

The ministry’s statistics show only 125 cases were decided in a year. UP also has the highest number of cases against lawmakers pending trial at 539, followed by 373 in Kerala.

Funds have been disbursed to 11 states and these have taken steps to build the special courts, the ministry said. But eight states and UTs have not gone for special courts and, instead, issued instructions to fast-track cases against MPs and MLAs.

First Published: Mar 11, 2018 22:32 IST