Data shows one-third of Tamil Nadu MLAs face criminal charges

Data shows one-third of Tamil Nadu MLAs face criminal charges
Highlights

The Supreme Court on Tuesday endorsed that Parliament enact a law to prevent defiled people from contesting electionsOut of 234 MLAs in Tamil Nadu, onethird of them face criminal cases as per affidavits filed during the 2016 assembly election

CHENNAI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday endorsed that Parliament enact a law to prevent defiled people from contesting elections.Out of 234 MLAs in Tamil Nadu, one-third of them face criminal cases as per affidavits filed during the 2016 assembly election.

An analysis of the data accumulated by the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) shows that the state has 75 MLAs facing criminal charges, with 43 have “serious cases” against them.

On top DMK leads the table with 44 of its 88 MLAs facing criminal cases. The AIADMK number is 28. Lately AIADMK legislators facing criminal cases crossed over to the DMK and are now legislators. One particular MLA has a murder case pending against him. The Supreme Court asked the party candidates to repeatedly make declarations in the media at the constituency-level about their criminal precursor.

Tamil Nadu also has MLAs who are accused in crimes against women, including sexual assault and rape.

Across the Nation, Jharkhand has the highest percentage of MLAs with criminal cases followed by Kerala and Bihar. Most cases are still at the trial stage. A DMK legislator, who is also an advocate, said, “Most cases were foisted on our partymen by the ruling party when we protested against them. As there is no proof against us, even after so many years, there is no chargesheet filed, let alone convictions.”

Of the 50 AIADMK MPs, ten have criminal cases pending against them, which are serious cases. In neighbouring Puducherry, 11 of the 30 MLAs face criminal cases.

“We are disappointed with the SC order recommending Parliament to enact the law as all details about MPs and MLAs are already in public domain since 2002. If Parliament wanted to enact a law it could have done so in the last 16 years but parties were not ready for [such a] legislation,” said ADR founder Jagdeep Chokkar.“All major parties give tickets to candidates with criminal cases against them, especially that of crimes against women. There are serious cases where charges have been framed and cognisance has been taken by the courts,” said Chokkar.

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