New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court on Thursday issued a notice to the Centre and asked for its stand on the plea seeking a lifetime ban on convicted criminals contesting any type of elections in the country.    

The notice was issued by an SC bench headed by Justice NV Ramana, who will succeed CJI SA Bobde as the next Chief Justice of India. As per the notice, the Centre will have to respond on the fresh plea made by BJP leader Ashwini Upadhyay within six weeks.

Ashwini Upadhyay, in his plea, also sought a ban on the entry of convicted criminals into judiciary and executive. The top court is also dealing with a plea on seeking fast-track trials in all serious cases related to the elected leaders of both Houses of the Parliament.    

The apex court had earlier passed several orders to expedite trials so that lawmakers facing serious charges can get a quick decision from courts. The court had said that the MLAs and MPs can get their names cleared early by the courts or face early conviction.

However, the SC order does not cover candidates who are entering the election battlefield for the first time. The fresh plea filed by Ashwini Upadhyay wants the SC to pass orders that would bar any convicted criminal from contesting any election.      

Taking stock of its earlier orders to fast-track courts against sitting MLAs and MPs, the SC termed as "shocking" the fact that a 36-year old case against a politician is still pending in Punjab. The bench was perusing the status report submitted in this case by amicus curiae Vijay Hansaria and demanded an explanation from the state on the issue.

Hansaria also cited a report to argue that the top court had asked for the information from all high courts regarding the corruption cases against lawmakers in the assemblies and the Parliament. However, only four of the high courts had responded to this.  

The bench then eventually asked for the details of all the cases against MLAs and MPs pending in courts, from the states and will now decide on what to do next to expedite these trials. 

Posted By: Talib Khan