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Date: 
13.12.2017
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Since the details as to in which courts the cases are pending is not available, it is hard to gather facts and figures for answering the query of the court (on number of cases filed against lawmakers after 2014).

Early last month, the apex court reminded the Centre to set up special courts to exclusively try lawmakers and decide cases within a year.

Centre in its affidavit stated that it has chose to set up 12 special courts for the time being to deal with cases against MPs and MLAs.

With regard to such statistics, the Centre has sought more time from the Court, submitting that it has contacted the respective States in order to gather the relevant details. As a trial court normally functions for around 242 days in a year, the special court will then have to dispose of 4.6 cases per day on average. The court is hearing a PIL petition filed by Supreme Courtadvocate Ashwini Upadhyay who has sought a lifetime ban on all convicted politicians.

Records show that in 2014, 1,581 MPs and MLAs were facing prosecution in a mind-boggling 13,500 cases.

The apex court would consider the government's affidavit on Wednesday. Taking serious note of this, the Supreme Court had directed the Centre to chalk-out a plan for setting up exclusive fast track courts to deal with such cases.

The Supreme Court has intervened on several occasions to trigger electoral reforms, including making it a must for candidates to declare their assets and list criminal cases against them, if any.

In response, the EC had said that it has already recommended to the Centre to amend an existing law to incorporate a life ban provision against convicted lawmakers. In states where there are less than 65 cases, it has been proposed that the cases should be sent to the existing fast track courts.

The government said it had tried to get the information from the election watchdog, which expressed its inability to provide the data.

However, even ADR did not have data on which courts these cases were pending in, said the government.

The apex court had also said that inadequate infrastructure in the courts was resulting in pendency and said that Parliament should pass laws and create fast-track courts for speedy disposal of such cases against the lawmakers.

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