NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday approved Centre‘s scheme for setting up of special courts to exclusively hear cases against tainted MPs and MLAs who are facing serious criminal charges and set a deadline of March 1 for fast track court to start functioning.
In a landmark decision intended to end the inordinate delay in the prosecution of politicians in criminal cases, a bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and Naveen Sinha said that it was the beginning and more such courts might be set up to hear cases against lawmakers after getting the data of all criminal cases pending against MPs, MLAs of the country.
Being nudged by apex court, the Centre decided to set up 12 special courts+ to deal exclusively with cases against 1,581 MPs and MLAs with the aim of disposing of them in a year.
SC’s decision could be a setback to politicians who, despite facing serious charges, have remained members of Parliament and state assemblies due to time consumed in trials. Such cases will fall in the purview of special courts and their fate will be decided expeditiously.
Complying with the SC direction to the Centre to set up special courts for lawmakers facing criminal charges, the Centre said 12 courts would be constituted. Two special courts would handle cases against 228 MPs and the other 10 would be set up in 10 states — Andhra, Bihar, Karnataka, Kerala, MP, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, UP and Bengal—where the number of MLAs booked for criminal acts is more than 65.
There are several high-profile cases against leaders from almost all political parties—regional and nationalwhere investigations have dragged on for years and those facing trial have evaded prison. The CBI has filed several cases against RJD leaders Lalu Prasad,+Rabri Devi and Tejashwi Yadav as also against Trinamool Congress MPs in the Narada case.
Ousted AIADMK leader Sasikala was convicted earlier this year+ in a 21-year-old case and her nephew TTV Dhinakaran has been charged with allegedly trying to influence an Election Commission decision. The BJP’s Maharashtra leader Eknath Khadse is being investigated in a land deal case.
Source : timesofindia