The Hindu

The National Election Watch (New), a non-political organisation working on electoral and political reform, has requested the major political parties not to give tickets to people with criminal background in the next elections to the Assembly and the Lok Sabha.

The political parties should take a firm stand against misuse of money power and bribing voters and they should disclose the criterion adopted for selection of their respective candidates. New State chapter representative Rakesh Dubbudu addressed letters to presidents of major political parties including Congress, TDP, TRS, BJP and two Left parties on Sunday.

He said an analysis of 62,847 candidates who contested the elections to Lok Sabha and State Assemblies since 2004 revealed that 11,063 (18 per cent) declared criminal charges against them while 5,253 (eight per cent) of these had serious criminal charges. As many as 162 out of the 543 MPs (30 per cent) in the current Lok Sabha were facing criminal charges, including 76 with charges of serious nature.

In all, 1,258 (31 per cent) of the MLAs across the country were facing criminal charges while 23 per cent of them with criminal records won the elections.

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