ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Towards Decriminalisation of Elections and Politics

This article studies the role of crime and money in elections and politics in the context of several recent far-reaching judgments of the Supreme Court and the Central Information Commission. Based on publicly available data of over 62,800 candidates, who contested national and state assembly elections from 2004 to 2013, it shows that both crime and money play an important role in winning elections. The article ends with some tentative recommendations for improving the situation; the recommendations include legal and administrative changes, and the role that civil society and voters can play. A long public debate and discussion is needed to try and evolve a reasonable consensus.

Nishank Varshney, Nilesh Ekka and K Srinivasulu assisted in the data analysis.

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