Apex court seeks speedy trial of tainted lawmakers

Apex court seeks to fast track trial of tainted lawmakers

New Delhi, Dec 4: The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked the lower judiciary to try on a priority basis the criminal cases pending against former and sitting Members of Parliament and Members of Legislative Assemblies.

Headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, the bench said those criminal matters against the MLAs and MPs, in which life imprisonment punishment warrants, should be taken up on a priority basis by Sessions Courts.

The bench, also comprising Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K M Joseph, asked for special courts to be set up in each district in the states of Bihar and Kerala to try those cases pending against MLAs and MPs.

Amicus Curiae (Friend of the Court) Vijay Hansaria and Sneha Kalita had submitted to the apex court yesterday, the data received by them from various states and its High Courts on pending criminal cases against sitting and former MPs and MLAs.

A copy of the report submitted by the Amicus Curiae, revealed that 4,122 criminal cases were pending, against sitting and former MPs and MLAs.

The bench had earlier sought detailed information with respect to the pending criminal cases against former and sitting MPs and MLAs.

The public interest litigation, which was filed by counsel-cum-Bharatiya Janata Party leader, Ashwini Upadhyay, was taken up for hearing today.

Mr Upadhay, in his petition, sought a direction from the Supreme Court seeking setting up of adequate number of special courts for expeditious trial in these cases against former and sitting MPs and MLAs. (UNI)