Concern has been raised for a long time about the increasing number of people with criminal image in politics.
To stop this, it has been expected from the political parties that they will refrain from fielding people with a tainted image in the election field.
But, this hope has proved futile. In every election, the number of representatives with criminal background increases slightly.
In such a situation, a public interest litigation was filed in the Supreme Court requesting that those accused of serious crimes should be barred from contesting elections.
On this, the court had asked the Central Government and the Election Commission whether it is possible to do so.
The government did not give any answer on this. Now again the Supreme Court has asked the Center to file an affidavit within two weeks.
In fact, according to the law, no one can be stopped from contesting elections until his guilt is proven.
In that too, only those who have been sentenced to two years or more can be stopped. Therefore, this requires a special legal provision, which cannot be done without the cooperation of the Central Government and the Election Commission.
However, with the intention of curbing the increasing criminalization in politics, a provision was made that while filling the nomination, every candidate will file an affidavit related to his income, property, criminal cases etc.
This was done to help the voters in taking decision while choosing their representative. It was also expected that people would start rejecting people with criminal image and then the entry of such people into politics would be stopped.
But the reality is that this provision has also not proved effective. About forty-three percent of the total public representatives elected in the last general elections had criminal cases registered against them.
They ownselves had stated this in his affidavit. Thus, many times criminal cases are filed against politically active people due to some rivalry or with the intention of defaming or harassing the opposition parties.
Most of such political cases are usually not of serious nature. The concern is about those people against whom cases are registered for serious crimes like kidnapping, robbery, rape, murder.
It is also not a hidden thing that the entry of people known as Bahubhi and Dabangg in the society is increasing in politics.
It is true that until the allegations against someone are proven, his civil rights cannot be hindered. But, it is also obvious that many people with criminal tendencies enter politics so that they can weaken the cases going on against them.
If they are in power, ongoing investigations and legal actions against them are seen to be put on hold until there is a change of government.
Politics cannot be a safe haven for a person with criminal tendencies. Why should those who do not care about the law themselves be given the right to make laws?
The PIL states that criminals who earlier worked to benefit politicians have now started entering politics for their own benefit. The government and all political parties need to show seriousness on this.