The Election Commission of India had told the Supreme Court that convicted MPs and MLAs should be banned from contesting elections. Photograph:( Others )
The Supreme Court has asked the Centre to constitute special courts on the lines of "fast-track courts" in order to quickly finish cases pending against MPs and MLAs in the country.
In September, India's top court had asked the government to consider legislating on setting up of new fast- track courts to expedite criminal case trials against parliamentarians and legislators.
"With regard to MPs and MLAs, it falls under the domain of Parliament. It has the necessary competence to come up with a law. Make law and create necessary infrastructure," a bench of Justices J Chelameswar and S Abdul Nazeer said.
"Every time Parliament and assembly makes a law, it creates rights and obligations resulting in more cases which are dealt with by the same set of courts," it observed.
"Expect for some specific tribunals, no new courts have come up. You (Centre) should create new courts and infrastructure as at present, the Government of India is spending only one or two per cent of the budget (judicial system)," it said, adding that this would also reduce the huge pendency.
The apex court 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.
Attorney General K K Venugopal agreed that fast-track courts were the need of the hour and said that some such courts have in the past done an excellent job and several people, especially those in jails, were benefitted by the system.