The landmark order of the Supreme Court that seeks to ensure the expeditious trial of sitting MLAs and MPs in criminal cases (March 11), was long overdue. It will send the needed chill down the spines of political parties if they are tempted to field candidates with criminal records in this election. One hopes this would pave the way for fresh and taint-free candidates to take their place in a new political order.
The order must be seen as a larger and laudable attempt to decriminalise politics. But the impact of the judiciary on lawmaking processes will hardly serve any purpose unless there is an attempt to focus on investigative processes, clearing executive lacuna and revamping the existing political structure so that a tainted politician does not ever have a chance of making his/her political comeback. Every case must be treated equally with the emphasis on speedy justice.
The ruling creates grounds for discrimination and goes against the fundamental principle of equality enshrined in the Constitution. In the judicial process, everybody should be treated equally and undergo the prescribed judicial process. While courts will be busy clearing cases involving elected representatives, the common man’s cases, whether criminal or civil, will linger on. Is this fair?