New Delhi [India], February 9 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Wednesday agreed to list the matter for hearing a plea seeking the establishment of special courts to try criminal cases against lawmakers and to debar those convicted MPs, MLAs from contesting elections for life.
A bench of Chief Justice of India NV Ramana and Justices AS Bopanna and Hima Kohli said it will list the matter for hearing after amicus curiae and senior advocate Vijay Hansaria, who is assisting the court in the matter, mentioned the matter and said that a report has been filed by him.
"We will list it," said the bench.
Last week amicus has filed the report in the apex court and informed that a total of 4,984 criminal cases against former and sitting Members of Parliament (MPs) and Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs) are pending before various sessions and magistrate courts across the country, an increase of 862 such cases in the last three years.
"Despite a series of directions by this court and continuous monitoring, as many as 4,984 cases are pending out of which 1,899 cases are more than five years old," stated the report submitted by amicus curiae Hansaria, assisting the court in the case.
"It may be noted that the total number of cases pending as on December 2018 were 4,110 and as of October 2020 were 4,859. Even after disposal of 2,775 cases after December 4, 2018, the cases against MPs/MLAs have increased from 4,122 to 4,984," it added.
The report was furnished in a petition filed by advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay in a 2016 case seeking the establishment of special courts to try criminal cases against lawmakers, a life ban on convicted politicians from contesting polls and speedy disposal of cases against them.
The report has said out of the 4,984 cases, 3,322 are magisterial cases while 1,651 are sessions cases.
It said 1,899 of such pending cases are more than five years old while 1,475 such cases have been pending for a period between two and five years.
It said more and more persons with criminal antecedents are occupying seats in Parliament and the state assemblies and it is of utmost necessity that urgent and stringent steps are taken for expeditious disposal of pending criminal cases.
Last year in August the top court had directed that no prosecution against the sitting of former MPs snd MLAs will be withdrawn without the permission of the High Court of the concerned state.
It further directed that judges hearing the criminal cases against MPs and MLAs in Special Courts should continue in their current posts until further orders of the Supreme Court. (ANI)