Rambabu Singh Thakur v. Sunil Arora (2020)
Updated: Apr 18
Facts of the case In this case, the Supreme Court of India observed that there has been an increase in the number of criminal politicians in India since the last four general elections, and political parties have provided no explanation for why they chose a candidate with a criminal record. In 2004, 24 per cent of members of Parliament were facing criminal charges. In 2009, that figure was 30%, 34% in 2014, and 43% in 2019.
The court's decision The Supreme Court ordered that political parties at the federal and state levels post on their respective websites the correct information about the pending criminal cases against the selected candidates, as well as the reasons why such candidates were chosen over other candidates with no criminal record.
Such information must also be published in one local newspaper and one national newspaper, as well as on the political party's official media platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter. The information must be made public within 48 hours of the candidate's selection or no later than two weeks before the first date for filing nominations, whichever comes first.
All concerned political parties must also submit to the Election Commission of India a report of compliance with the Apex Court's directions within 72 hours of the candidate's selection, and if any political party fails to submit such a report to the Election Commission, the Election Commission shall bring such incident to the attention of the Supreme Court of India as being in contempt of court's orders.