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India over 4,000 Cases Pending Against Politicians, Top Court Says "Shocking"

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"Of the 4,442 cases against sitting and former legislators, 174 cases are offences punishable with a life term in jail," said the three-judge bench of the Supreme Court
All IndiaReported by A Vaidyanathan, Edited by Anindita SanyalUpdated: September 10, 2020 11:22 pm IST


Over 4,000 Cases Pending Against Politicians, Top Court Says 'Shocking'

4,442 cases are pending against sitting and former legislators, the Supreme Court has said.


New Delhi:
Nearly 4,500 criminal cases are pending against sitting and former legislators across the country, data from 24 High Courts have shown. The Supreme Court said the state of affairs is "shocking". "So many cases are pending at the initial stages because of the influence of law makers," the court said while hearing a petition on criminal cases against political leaders.

"Of the 4,442 cases against sitting and former legislators, 174 cases are offences punishable with a life term in jail," said the three-judge bench of Justices NV Ramana, Surya Kant and Hrishkesh Roy.

"In 352 cases, the trial has been stayed either by High Court or by the Supreme Court," the judges said, going through the material collated from High Courts.

In Bengal and Punjab, some pending cases date back to 1981 and 1983. In Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, the corresponding date is 1991.

The petition was filed by advocate and BJP leader Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, who had sought a lifetime ban on convicted politicians from contesting elections. Currently, they are banned for six years.

After hearing the petition, the top court had sought details of all pending criminal cases against sitting and former MPs and MLAs from 24 High Courts in the country.

The top court has also sought information on white collar crimes from High Courts which are yet to provide it. This would include pending corruption cases, money laundering cases and cases under customs laws.

The information must be provided to amicus curiae senior advocate Vijay Hansaria, who is assisting the court in the matter, within two days, the bench said.

Mr Hansaria, who submitted a report on basis of the data received from the High Courts, has suggested setting up special courts in every district to deal with cases against sitting and former legislators, appointment of special public prosecutors, witness protection programme and other issues.

The concerned High Courts can monitor the progress of the trial, the report said.

The Supreme Court said it would consider the suggestions by the amicus curiae in its next hearing on September 16.


Such a disgusting country India is.
 

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