A total of 3,816 criminal cases were registered against 1,765 MPs and MLAs across the country, of which 3,045 cases are pending, the Centre has told the Supreme Court in an affidavit. The figures, information for which was provided by 23 High Courts, does not include the cases registered in Maharashtra and Goa.
Uttar Pradesh leads the tally with 565 cases against 248 MPs and MLAs, closely followed by Kerala with 533 cases against 114 legislators. UP also has the maximum pending cases of 539, while Kerala is second with 373. Tamil Nadu is third on the list with 402 cases against 178 MPs and MLAs, of which 324 are pending. No case has been lodged against any MP or MLA in Manipur and Mizoram.
The affidavit, filed by Union Ministry of Law and Justice, clarifies that requisite details from the Bombay High Court had not been received and as such, number of cases against people’s representatives in Maharashtra and Goa was not known yet. The affidavit comes in response to a direction by a two-judge bench of the apex court headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi in November 1, 2017, seeking information on the number of cases against legislators. The court was hearing a PIL by BJP leader and advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, who sought a lifelong ban on convicted politicians from contesting elections.
The apex court had in March 2014 directed that cases against people’s representatives should be disposed of within a year. The Centre said it had sought details on cases against MPs and MLAs from High Courts, legislative assemblies and Union Territories, as well as state and union territory governments. Twenty three High Courts, seven legislative assemblies and 11 governments had provided the details. Lok Sabha Secretariat, Rajya Sabha Secretariat and five legislative assemblies said they don’t have any information, while two governments and five other legislative assemblies informed they had forwarded the reference further.