In a major step towards decriminalising politics, the Supreme Court on Tuesday stated that political parties must make criminal records of their poll candidates public within 48 hours of their selection.
In a bid to stop misuse of power, the court also said that criminal cases against these MLAs and MPs cannot be withdrawn without approval from High Courts.
This was informed during a hearing of a petition that calls for suspending the symbol of political parties that do not disclose criminal backgrounds of their candidates.
Petitions have asked for contempt against political parties for not obeying the February 2020 orders of the Supreme Court.
That verdict had said all political parties had to explain why they chose candidates with criminal cases and disclose details of the cases on their party website along with the reasons for selecting such candidates.
Moreover, the Election Commission also directed political parties to publish the information in media and newspapers.
During the Bihar Assembly polls, the CPI(M) and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) had given an unconditional apology to the Supreme Court for not following orders on disclosing the criminal records of their candidates.
Taking a strong note, the Election Commission told the court that it would suspend their symbols for following the order.