In what could spell trouble for a host of politicians awaiting court verdicts in criminal cases ahead of elections, the UPA government has decided to wait for a “better atmosphere” in terms of public perception about the political class before making any further attempt in Parliament to nullify the Supreme Court order regarding immediate disqualification of convicted MPs and MLAs.
According to senior UPA functionaries, given that the December Winter session falls quite close to general elections, the government is unlikely to push any legislation that could be perceived as an attempt on the part of the Congress to shield convicted politicians.
“Those (politicians) whose cases are pending in courts should only hope that they do not get any adverse verdict till the next Lok Sabha elections. Why should this government be painted as one opposing decriminalisation of politics? Let the next government take a call on whether it should amend the law to negate the apex court’s ruling about disqualification,” a senior government functionary told The Indian Express.
This thinking in the ruling dispensation at the Centre may send shivers down the spine of many politicians who are awaiting court rulings in different cases in coming months. In fact, RJD supremo Lalu Prasad Yadav who is expecting a verdict in the fodder scam case by a trial court in the next few weeks was learnt to be extremely upset with the Congress for developing cold feet on the Representation of the People (Second Amendment and Validation) Bill, 2013, that sought to nullify the apex court order regarding disqualification. It was supposed to be tabled in Rajya Sabha last Thursday but the government chose not to.
Incidentally, the government’s reluctance to go ahead with it came a day after the Supreme Court had rejected the Centre’s review petition in this regard.
“It is completely