Crime branch : March 23 2009 : India Today : Pg. 17
They go around shouting slogans and hurling abuses at each other but if there is one thing that political parties of all hues have in common, it is their love for candidates with criminal backgrounds. And it would seem that the big two- the Congress and BJP are trying to outdo each other. In the 14th Lok Sabha, the BJP had 23 such MPs while the Congress lagged, but not too far behind, with 17 MPs. Of the 543 MPs in the 14th Lok Sabha, 125 had criminal cases pending against them. They belonged to different parties, ensuring the there was equitable distribution of the tainted. "Civic society organizations are demanding the politics be freed from crime," says Jagdeep Choikkar, former dean of IIM Ahmedabad and founder member, Association for Democratic Reforms, which complied the list.
- by Shafi Rahman