Criminalisation Of Politics: Issues And Resolutions

Danda Sai Shubham, National Law University, Delhi


Have you ever considered what it means when you hear the term "political criminalization"?

Criminals are involved in politics as a result of the criminalization of politics. This means that someone with a criminal record can run for office and be elected to the parliament or state legislature. It is alleged that politics had progressed to the point where lawmakers had become lawbreakers. The growing nexus between criminals and politics in a democratic society like India threatens the existence of true democracy. Persons with criminal records have more political clout than people without criminal records, which is currently becoming a trend.

The growing proportion of parliamentarians with a criminal record:

24 % in 2004

30 % in 2009

34 % in 2014

43 % in 2019

Almost half of the new Lok Sabha MPs have a criminal past. The growing number of members of parliament with criminal convictions jeopardises the future of any legitimate democracy.

The objective of this study is to describe how the system of criminalisation of politics still persists, as well as the measures undertaken by relevant authorities to combat this threat and its repercussions. This paper argues that a more concerted and focused effort is required to restore faith in the whole democratic process while also freeing politics of criminal elements. There are 3 components to this study. Part one discusses the scope of the problem and the issue of goonda raj statistics, Part two discusses how the system aids and abets its persistence, and Part three discusses the countermeasures adopted and whether or not they were effective.

Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research

Abbreviation: IJLLR

ISSN: 2582-8878


Accessibility: Open Access

License: Creative Commons 4.0

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​All research articles published in The Indian Journal of Law and Legal Research are fully open access. i.e. immediately freely available to read, download and share. Articles are published under the terms of a Creative Commons license which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the IJLLR or its members. The designations employed in this publication and the presentation of material therein do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the IJLLR.