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June 6, 2024

Alarming Rise in Criminal Cases Among Newly Elected Lok Sabha MPs

An alarming analysis by the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) has revealed that 251 out of the 543 newly elected Lok Sabha members have criminal cases registered against them. Of these, 27 have already been convicted. This marks the highest number of candidates with criminal charges ever elected to the Lower House of the Indian Parliament.

Historically, the number of MPs with criminal cases has been rising. In 2019, 233 MPs (43 percent) had declared criminal cases. This was a significant increase from 185 MPs (34 percent) in 2014, 162 MPs (30 percent) in 2009, and 125 MPs (23 percent) in 2004. Over the years, there has been a 55 percent increase in the number of MPs with declared criminal cases since 2009.

The analysis also indicates a surge in MPs facing serious criminal charges. This year, 170 winning candidates (31 percent) are involved in serious criminal cases, including charges of rape, murder, attempt to murder, kidnapping, and crimes against women. This is up from 159 MPs (29 percent) in 2019, 112 MPs (21 percent) in 2014, and 76 MPs (14 percent) in 2009. Since 2009, there has been a staggering 124 percent increase in the number of MPs with serious criminal cases.

Specific cases among the newly elected MPs are particularly concerning. Out of the 251 MPs with criminal cases, 27 have declared convictions. Additionally, four MPs have declared cases related to murder (Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code), 27 are involved in attempted murder cases (Section 307 of the IPC), and 15 face charges related to crimes against women, including two under IPC Section 376 for rape. Four winning candidates have declared cases related to kidnapping, and 43 have cases related to hate speech.

The ADR analysis highlighted the electoral success of candidates with criminal backgrounds in the 2024 elections. The chances of winning for a candidate with declared criminal cases stood at 15.3 percent, in stark contrast to just 4.4 percent for candidates without criminal records.

Breaking down the data by party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerged as the largest party with 240 winning candidates, out of which 94 (39 percent) have declared criminal cases. Among the Congress’s 99 winning candidates, 49 (49 percent) have criminal charges, while 21 (45 percent) of the Samajwadi Party’s 37 candidates face criminal charges. Other notable statistics include 13 (45 percent) of the Trinamool Congress’s 29 candidates, 13 (59 percent) of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam’s 22 candidates, eight (50 percent) of the Telugu Desam Party’s 16 candidates, and five (71 percent) of the Shiv Sena’s seven winning candidates having declared criminal cases.

In terms of serious criminal cases, 63 BJP candidates (26 percent), 32 Congress candidates (32 percent), and 17 Samajwadi Party candidates (46 percent) have declared such charges. The analysis also found that seven Trinamool Congress candidates (24 percent), six Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam candidates (27 percent), five Telugu Desam Party candidates (31 percent), and four Shiv Sena candidates (57 percent) face serious criminal charges.

The increasing trend of MPs with criminal backgrounds highlights a significant concern in Indian politics. The data underscores the need for electoral reforms and stricter scrutiny of candidates to ensure a cleaner and more accountable political system. The rising number of elected representatives with serious criminal allegations not only taints the democratic process but also poses a challenge to the integrity and functionality of the legislative body.

Read more latest news on R9 News

Jhumpa Lahiri

Jhumpa Lahiri

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