SC orders parties to publish criminal history of Lok Sabha-THE HINDU-14-02-2020

News:

The Supreme Court on Thursday ordered political parties to publish the entire criminal history of their candidates for Assembly and Lok Sabha elections along with the reasons that goaded them to field suspected criminals over decent people. The information should be published in a local as well as a national newspaper as well as the parties’ social media handles. Nariman, in the judgment, ordered political parties to submit compliance reports with the Election Commission of India within 72 hours or risk contempt of court action. The judgment is applicable to parties both at Central and State levels.

Information should be detailed:

A party would have to give reasons to the voter that it was not the candidate’s “mere winnability at the polls” which guided its decision to give him ticket to contest elections. “It appears that over the last four general elections, there has been an alarming increase in the incidence of criminals in politics. The four-page judgment was based on a contempt petition filed by advocate Ashwini Upadhyay about the general disregard shown by political parties to a 2018 Constitution Bench judgment to publish the criminal details of their candidates in their respective websites and print as well as electronic media for public awareness. “In this judgment , this court was cognisant of the increasing criminalisation of politics in India and the lack of information about such criminalisation among the citizenry”, Justice Nariman observed.

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