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Criminalization of Politics, Meaning, Causes, Effects and Consequences

Criminalization of Politics

Criminalization of Politics is an important topic for UPSC exams, especially in the context of Indian politics. Here are some key points that you can include in your UPSC notes regarding the criminalization of politics. Criminalization of politics refers to the increasing involvement of individuals with criminal backgrounds or charges in the political process, including running for political office or holding positions of power within political parties.

The Criminalization of Politics is an important part of Indian Polity which is an important subject in UPSC Syllabus. Students can also go for UPSC Mock Test to get more accuracy in their preparations.

Criminalization of Politics Meaning

Politics in India is becoming more and more criminalized, which suggests a rise in the number of criminals and those facing criminal accusations. Additionally, this phrase refers to those with criminal histories who go on to become elected officials and delegates.

A person who has served a sentence of more than two years in prison is also ineligible to run for office until six years have passed since their release, according to Section 8 of the Indian Representative of People Act. However, this clause is ineffective in real life because of the ongoing criminalization of politics in India.

Criminalization of Politics Causes

Several laws and court rulings haven’t really helped because they aren’t being enforced.  The disclosure of a candidate’s whole criminal background by a political party may not be very successful because many voters choose to cast their ballots based only on caste or religious considerations. In large part because of their capacity to finance their own elections and contribute significant resources to their respective parties, candidates with serious records appear to perform well despite their public perception. In some cases, voters are also without choices because every candidate running for office has a criminal background.

Criminalization of Politics Effects

Criminalizing politics reduces the number of viable candidates that people can choose from. It goes against the democratic ideal of free and fair elections, which is its cornerstone.  The main issue is that lawbreakers end up making the laws, which undermines the democratic process’ ability to provide effective government. These unwholesome democratic tendencies portray an unfavorable picture of the state institutions of India and the caliber of its elected officials.

Additionally, it causes a rise in the flow of illicit funds both before and after elections, which worsens social corruption and impairs the performance of public employees. It fosters a culture of violence in society, creates a poor example for young people to follow, and erodes public confidence in democracy as a form of government.

Criminalization of Politics Consequences

The quality of India’s democracy is negatively impacted by the presence of people with criminal histories in the country’s politics and legal system. Due to extensive ties to the illegal underworld, huge sums of illegal money are funnelled into the political process.

The criminalization of politics has the consequence of limiting the legal process and increasing trial uncertainty. Criminals entering Indian politics increase crime in daily life. The executive, bureaucracy, legislature, and judiciary are among the state institutions that are badly impacted. Politics being made illegal displays a violent culture in the neighbourhood and is an example of young people.

Criminalization of Politics Measures to Curb

It is necessary to change Section 125A of the Representation of Peoples Act to increase the minimum sentence for falsifying or omitting information in Form 26 in accordance with the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961 to a minimum of two years in prison. All individuals with ongoing criminal charges that are punishable by a term of more than five years will be disqualified with the retroactive application, subject to appropriate safeguards.

According to section 125A, submitting a false affidavit carries a two-year sentence. Disqualification should be made possible in the event of a conviction under this. Providing that charges be filed six months prior to the election, the 2nd Administrative Reforms Commission suggested amending Section 8 of the Representation of People Act, 1951 to bar candidates who are accused of severe crimes or corruption from running. Making campaign finance more transparent will make it less appealing for political parties to work with gangsters.

Criminalization of Politics Initiatives and Reforms

Strengthening existing laws related to the criminalization of politics, expediting the resolution of criminal cases against politicians, and ensuring stricter eligibility criteria for candidates. Electoral reform like Encouraging inner-party democracy, transparent candidate selection processes, and stringent mechanisms to prevent the nomination of candidates with criminal backgrounds is needed. Promoting citizen engagement and voter education, encouraging voters to make informed choices and support clean and ethical candidates.

Criminalization of Politics and Role of the Judiciary

Highlight the significant role played by the Supreme Court in addressing the issue of criminalization in politics, including directives such as the disclosure of criminal records, barring individuals with criminal charges from contesting elections, and decriminalization efforts.

Criminalization of Politics UPSC

The criminalization of politics poses a grave threat to democracy and governance in India. It requires a multi-faceted approach involving legal reforms, electoral reforms, and increased public awareness to effectively address this menace. As UPSC aspirants, it is essential to understand and analyze this issue from various perspectives to contribute to the creation of a cleaner and more accountable political system. Students can read all the details related to UPSC by visiting the official website of StudyIQ UPSC Online Coaching.

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Criminalization of Politics FAQs

What is criminalization of politics?

The criminalization of politics means the participation of criminals in politics which includes that criminals can contest in the elections and get elected as members of the Parliament and the State legislature.

What are the effects of criminalization in politics?

Sometimes political parties give candidature to people having a criminal background, facing criminal allegations and allegations of corruption. This increases the role of money and muscle power in politics.

What are the statistics of criminalization of politics?

In the year 2009, 30% of MPs in Lok Sabha were against criminal charges. In 2014, 34% of MPs in the Lok Sabha faced criminal charges. The percentage was extremely high in the last Lok Sabha elections.

What is criminalisation of politics?

"Criminalization of politics" is a political buzzword in the United States used in the media, by commentators, bloggers as well as by defenders of high-ranking government officials who have been indicted or have faced criminal or ethical investigations.

What is the cause of criminalization of politics?

The most significant cause of the criminalisation of politics is the profane relationship between bureaucracy and politicians. This unwanted and destructive connection between bureaucracy and political managers increased the scope of the criminalisation of politics.

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