Parliament Must Keep Criminals Away : SC

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday said on petitions asking lawmakers facing criminal charges be barred from contesting elections or be disqualified after conviction.

“We are not in a position to add disqualification of candidates on filing of charge sheet in criminal cases,” Dipak Misra, Chief Justice of India said, reading out the order.

Asking the parliament to stop criminals from contesting polls, the court said: “National interest demands parliament enacts such legislation and the country awaits such a legislation.”

“It’s the responsibility of all to enforce the law “, added Chief Justice Mishra

Responding to petitions the Supreme Court entreated  disqualification of lawmakers even before their conviction in criminal cases to curb “criminalisation of politics” in the country.

Chief Justice Misra’s  bench include Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Indu Malhotra.

The Attorney General in course of an argument said, “Mere allegation cannot prevent a member from contesting.” He also said the court can’t remain oblivious of the fact that political aspirants are often framed in cases ahead of polls and said that fast-track courts to try accused politicians were “the only solution”.

The petitioners pointed out that trials in cases involving politicians were deliberately delayed, and therefore, several lawbreakers enter the legislature and become lawmakers.

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