34% MPs elected from General Elections 2014 have criminal charges against them.

Let's look at a breakdown of candidates with criminal cases; who slipped through the system. Who we voted to power.

Two powerful civil society groups have released disturbing data on the current Lok Sabha candidates contesting the Elections. Their findings are crucial for us to determine how transparent our democracy is.

186 out of 543 MPs elected in the current Lok Sabha in 2014 have criminal cases against them.

Let's look at some more data released by the National Election Watch (NEW) and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).

How many Candidates with Criminal Records have contested in the last 2 Elections?

  • About 17% - Elections 2014
  • About 15 % - Elections 2009

The overall number has increased by about 2 % since the Previous Elections.

Candidates who Won in Elections 2014

  • Total number of MPs - 543
  • Candidates with Declared Criminal Cases - 186
  • Candidates with Serious Criminal Charges - 112

Isn't it a very big number of candidates occupying our seats that have criminal cases against them?

Candidates in Question Who Contested Elections 2014

  • Total number of Candidates analysed - 8,163
  • Candidates with Declared Criminal Cases - 1,398
  • Candidates with Serious Criminal Charges - 889

Again, an extremely high number of candidates with criminal cases contested this election.

What do "serious criminal charges" mean?

This is the ADR's criteria for candidates with a criminal background that come under the category of "serious criminal cases" :

Some important criteria for serious criminal cases:

  • Offences that are assault, murder, kidnap, dacoity, rape related
  • Crimes against women.
  • Offence for which maximum punishment is 5 years or more.
  • If an offence is non-bailable.
  • Offences under Prevention of Corruption Act.

Here's a look at candidates with criminal cases over the last three Elections in India - Examining our voter affinities with them.

Overall voting % for candidates with criminal candidates has dropped

More candidates with criminal cases are contesting now as clearly seen in the graph above.

Yet if we go by the last column in the box, a slightly lower percentage of such candidates have won. This means that we're being more prudent about who we are electing to power now.

Our voting patterns reveal now that a lower % of candidates that have criminal cases are being elected.

Cheers to the Powerof49!

Here's to the PowerOf49 that exercised their due restraint before voting questionable candidates to power.

Though we still have a long way to go to before we have a completely clean and honest Government, we can say slowly but surely, we're getting there.

Let's make change happen. Let's have a clean, honest and transparent Government leading the way for the rest of India.

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