The Supreme Court on Wednesday told the Centre to constitute special courts to expedite trials in cases where MPs and MLAs are named as accused. The bench said these trials should be completed in a year, and asked the central government to update it about the matter on December 13, News18 reported.
Earlier in the day, the Election Commission on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that a lifetime ban should be imposed on convicted parliamentarians and MLAs from contesting elections, ANI reported. In July, the bench told the Election Commission to take a stand on the matter after the poll panel reversed its earlier position supporting a lifetime ban for a convicted lawmaker.
A bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and Navin Sinha on Tuesday decided to examine if the court’s order from three years ago – that trial proceedings in cases of corruption and serious crimes against elected representatives must be completed in a year – has been implemented, The Times of India reported. The court asked for data on cases disposed of within the time limit.
The bench is hearing petitions seeking to declare provisions of the Representation of People Act as ultra vires (beyond the state’s power). Parts of the act bar politicians sentenced to a jail term of two years or more from contesting elections for six years from the date of their release from prison.
Bharatiya Janata Party leader Ashwani Kumar is one of the petitioners in the case. The Narendra Modi government opposed the petition, saying that the court should not pass orders on the case as it is a matter Parliament should decide.