30 percent MPs have criminal cases, says report

New Delhi, July 29 (IANS) About 30 percent of Lok Sabha members and 17 percent of Rajya Sabha members have criminal cases pending against them, said a report which noted that the probability of winning an election by a candidate with criminal record is higher than that of one with a clean background.

Shiv Sena members top the list, the report released Monday.

The joint report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) and the National Election Watch (NEW) was based on affidavits filed by candidates during elections since 2004.

The analysis stated that a candidate with a clean record has 12 percent chance of winning the election whereas for a candidate with a criminal record, the chance of winning is 23 percent.

A total of 8,790 affidavits filed by MPs and state legislators were analysed.

The report found that 162 (30 percent) of the 543 present Lok Sabha members face "criminal cases" and 76 others (14 percent) "serious criminal cases".

About 40 (17 percent) of the 232 members from the Rajya Sabha have "criminal cases" and 16 others (7 percent) have "serious criminal cases" filed against them.

Seventy-five percent of the offending MPs and state legislators were elected on Shiv Sena ticket since 2004. This was followed by Lalu Prasad's Rashtriya Janata Dal (46 percent).

The Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party account for 22 percent and 31 percent of MPs and state legislators mired in criminal cases.

The independent agencies analysed 62,847 candidates who have contested either parliamentary or assembly elections since 2004, of whom 4,181 were repeat candidates.

"Out of 4,181 repeat candidates, 1,072 had a criminal case the first time they contested an election and 788 cases had the second time also," said the analysis.

"This goes to show that political parties gave tickets to 74 percent of candidates with criminal records second time despite knowing their criminal background," said Anil Bairwal, national coordinator at National Election Watch.

According to the analysis, in terms of assets it was Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) which tops the chart with average assets of a candidate being Rs.6.02 crore.

The SAD is followed by Telugu Desam Party with its candidates having average assets of Rs.5.61 crore.

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