Bengal tops list of tainted legislators, says study

“Around 35 per cent of MLAs of West Bengal, 29 per cent of Tamil Nadu, 10 per cent of Assam and 30 per cent of MLAs from Puducherry have criminal cases pending against them,” a statement from Election Watch, the election analysis wing of a think tank, Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) said. The organisation did not analyse the fifth state, Kerala.

West Bengal has a total of 102 legislators with pending cases against them, as per their own declaration. At least 75 of them face serious charges like murder, attempt to murder, theft and kidnapping.

“All major parties have MLAs with pending criminal cases. Trinamool Congress has 69 MLAs out of 183 analysed (38 per cent), Congress has 17 out of 42 (41 per cent) and CPI-M (Communist Party of India-Marxist) has 7 out of 40 (18 percent) MLAs analysed with pending criminal cases,” the report said.

Ranking second among the four, Union Territory Puducherry has nine legislators with pending charges. “Two MLAs out of these have declared serious IPC (Indian Penal Code) charges like voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons,” ADR said.

In Tamil Nadu, 66 legislators have criminal cases pending against them, with the victorious AIADMK having highest number of 46 tainted legislators, 31 per cent of its assembly strength. DMK has seven out of 23 lawmakers (30 per cent) with pending charges, CPI-M three out of 10 (30 per cent) and PMK two out of its three legislators (67 per cent).

“Thirtysix MLAs out of these 66 analyzed have declared serious IPC charges like murder, attempt to murder, robbery and extortion against them,” said ADR.  

In Assam, 13 of its 126 legislators have criminal cases pending against them.
Congress, which won the polls, has only four such legislators out of its assembly strength of 78 (five per cent).

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