Analysis of Cases Against Karnataka MPs and MLAs

The Hon’ble High Court of Karnataka in the suo motu public interest litigation (WP 10240/2020) is monitoring the progress of trials before the Special Court dealing with criminal prosecutions against Members of Parliament, Members of the State Legislative Assembly, and Members of the Legislative Council.

With a view to analyse the progress of such cases, DAKSH has identified eight criminal cases that were filed against Members of Parliament, and 131 criminal cases that were filed against Members of the Karnataka State Legislative Assembly.

The detailed findings of our analysis has been provided below. In summary, it was found that the pending cases have been pending for an average of 5.4 years, while the disposed cases took 3.2 years to be disposed. The progress of cases varies widely depending on the court and district that the cases are/were in. Cases that are pending before, or were disposed by, the Special Court (Court Hall 82 of the Bengaluru City Civil and Sessions Court) took lesser time to progress through court, when compared to the time taken by the cases to progress in other courts. Further, cases against the sitting MLAs and MPs take longer to progress in court when compared to cases of similar case types in the Bengaluru City Civil and Sessions Court.

Sources:

Based on the affidavits filed before the Election Commission by the Members of Parliament and Members of the State Legislative Assembly, the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) has made publicly available information of the then-pending criminal cases against such persons. Using the information collated by ADR, DAKSH was able to identify and obtain data pertaining to 139 cases in the subordinate courts against 59 sitting MLAs and MPs from eCourts (the list of cases has been provided in the Annexure). Data from these cases have been analysed to submit the below findings.

Data sample:

We analysed 139 criminal cases, of which, 34 cases are pending, 51 cases have been disposed, and 54 cases were transferred from one court to another (for which we analysed case progress in the first court up to the date of transfer).

The cases analysed are before courts in the following districts:

District Number of cases analysed
BAGALKOT 8
BALLARI 12
BELAGAVI 13
BENGALURU 45
BENGALURU RURAL 2
BIDAR 1
CHAMRAJNAGAR 2
CHIKKAMAGALURU 1
DAKSHINA KANNADA 3
DAVANGERE 5
DHARWAD 2
HASSAN 1
HAVERI 4
HYDERABAD (TELANGANA) 2
KALABURAGI 4
KOLAR 1
KOPPAL 3
MANDYA 4
MYSURU 3
RAICHUR 2
SHIVAMOGGA 7
TUMAKURU 1
UTTARA KANNADA 3
VIJAYAPURA 7
YADGIR 3

 

 

Analysis of progress of cases:

Pending cases

These cases have been pending for an average of 1,946 days (5.4 years). These cases have had on average 43 hearings and the average number of days between these hearings is 20 days. However, notably, there are also three pending cases filed in 2014 that have gone through over 300 hearings.

The average pendency of cases varies in each district with the four cases from Belagavi pending the longest, for an average of 2,845 days (7.8 years). The four pending cases in Belagavi have gone through 65 hearings with an average of 40 days between each hearing. Further, Bengaluru which has the highest numbers of cases (22 pending cases), has an average pendency of 1,759 days (4.8 years). The average number of hearings the cases in Bengaluru have already gone through is 34 hearings, and the average number of days between two consecutive hearings for cases in Bengaluru district is 19 days.

If we compare cases against MPs and MLAs that are before the Special Court, i.e. Court Hall 82 in Bengaluru’s City Civil and Sessions Court (19 cases), to cases before other courts (15 cases), we found that cases before Court Hall 82 have been pending for an average of 1,769 days (4.8 years), as opposed to cases before the other courts that have been pending for an average 2,170 days (6 years). The 19 cases before the Special Court have had an average of 40 hearings with the average number of days between these hearings being 17 days, while the 15 cases before other courts have had an average of 47 hearings with the average number of days between these hearings being 23 days.

Most cases (19 out of 34) are pending at the stage of notice/warrant/summons. Further, nine cases are pending at the stage of evidence.

Disposed cases

The average number of days disposed cases took to be disposed was 1,166 days (3.2 years). The average number of hearings taken to dispose the cases is 25 hearings, with the average number of days between each hearing being 31 days. The amount of time taken to dispose cases is most often lower than the average amount of time for which cases are pending in court.

The average time taken for disposal of cases varies in each district, with the 15 disposed cases from Bengaluru district taking an average of 835 days (2.3 years) to be disposed. The four disposed cases from Ballari district took the longest time for disposal at 2,819 days (7.7 years). The average number of hearings such cases went through in Ballari district is 58 hearings, with the average number of days between two consecutive hearings being 30 days.

If we compare cases against MPs and MLAs that are before the Special Court, i.e. Court Hall 82 in Bengaluru’s City Civil and Sessions Court (11 cases) to cases before other courts (40 cases), we found that cases before Court Hall 82 took an average of 890 days (2.4 years) to be disposed, as opposed to cases before the other courts which took an average of 1,244 days (3.4 years) to be disposed. The 11 disposed cases before the Special Court had an average of 28 hearings with the average number of days between those hearings being 20 days, while the 40 cases before the other courts had an average of 24 hearings per case with the average number of days between those hearings being 35 days.

In order to understand where the delay in progress takes place, we analysed the stage at which cases were getting stuck at the longest in the lifecycle of the disposed cases. It was found that disposed cases were stuck at the stages of framing of charges and evidence the longest. The average number of days spent at the stage of framing of charges was 443 days, over ten hearings. The average number of days spent at the stage of evidence is 369 days, over 15 hearings.

The nature of disposal and the time taken to dispose the cases are provided below:

Nature of disposal Time taken for disposal in days Count of cases
Contested-ACQUITTED 965 10
Contested-ALLOWED 680 5
Contested-ALLOWED OTHERWISE 10 1
Contested-ALLOWED/GRANTED AFTER FULL HEARING 38 1
Contested-BAIL GRANTED 17 1
Contested-CLOSED 1402 3
Contested-CONVICTED AND SENTENCED 2098 1
Contested-DISCHARGED 2315 1
Contested-DISMISSED 1096 1
Contested-DISPOSED OTHERWISE 2384 1
Contested-REJECTED 524 1
Uncontested-ALLOWED OTHERWISE 304 2
Uncontested-CLOSED 2166 5
Uncontested-COMMITTED TO SESSION COURT 2776 1
Uncontested-COMMITTED TO SESSIONS COURT 168 1
Uncontested-COMPOUNDED 1223 2
Uncontested-DISCHARGED 1372 4
Uncontested-DISMISSED 378 2
Uncontested-DISPOSED OTHERWISE 2458 5
Uncontested-DISPOSED OTHERWISE 155 1
Uncontested-QUASHED 1723 1
Uncontested-Settled in LOK ADALATH 414 1

 

Transferred cases

In addition to the cases analysed above that are either pending or have been disposed, we were also able to identify 54 cases that were transferred from one court to another for which we analysed case progress in the first court up to the date of transfer. It was found that the average amount of time such cases spent in the court prior to their transfer was 1,299 days (3.6 years) and had gone through 25 hearings on average.

Comparison of case progress

In order to understand and put in perspective the time taken for criminal cases in the Special Court to be disposed when compared to other criminal cases, we have analysed the progress of cases before the Special Court—Court Hall No. 82 (‘CH 82’)—and compared it to the progress of cases before 80 other City Civil and Sessions Court Halls (‘Other CHs’) in Bengaluru. To enable comparison, we have only analysed cases belong to the case types CC, CRLMISC, CRLRP, PCR, and SPLC at CH 82 and the Other CHs.

131 criminal cases at CH 82 have been pending for an average of 320 days, while 5,107 criminal cases at Other CHs have been pending for an average of 603 days. On the exclusion of cases belonging to the CRLMISC case type that includes bail matters which may remain pending for a shorter amount of time, it was found that cases before CH 82 remain pending for an average of 393 days (based on an analysis of 128 pending cases), while cases before Other CHs remain pending for 649 days (based on an analysis of 3,835 pending cases).

Regarding the time taken to dispose cases, it was found that cases before CH 82 took an average of 157 days to be disposed (based on an analysis of 147 disposed cases), while cases before Other CHs took 64 days to be disposed (based on an analysis of 1,26,482 disposed cases). However, on exclusion of cases belonging to the CRLMISC case type that includes bail matters, it was found that cases before CH 82 took an average of 185 days to be disposed (based on an analysis of 129 disposed cases), while cases before Other CHs took 730 days (based on an analysis of 16,294 cases).

Annexure

CNR number Combined case number District
KABK030014332012 CC-877-2012 BAGALKOT
KABK030016402013 CC-1649-2013 BAGALKOT
KABK030036562017 CC-2741-2017 BAGALKOT
KABK310012892016 CC-529-2016 BAGALKOT
KABK310013192016 CC-556-2016 BAGALKOT
KABK310013342017 CC-751-2017 BAGALKOT
KABK310013422013 CC-590-2013 BAGALKOT
KABK310023272017 CC-1362-2017 BAGALKOT
KABI010015852013 PCR-1-2013 BALLARI
KABI040000082005 CC-1600-2005 BALLARI
KABI040013192014 CC-752-2014 BALLARI
KABI050002932015 CC-70-2015 BALLARI
KABI050010722015 CC-464-2015 BALLARI
KABI050014252013 CC-789-2013 BALLARI
KABI060008082015 CC-605-2015 BALLARI
KABI080012752016 CC-546-2016 BALLARI
KABI200006352013 CC-316-2013 BALLARI
KABI300000012007 CC-56-2007 BALLARI
KABI400011392013 CC-183-2013 BALLARI
KABI410018882017 CC-891-2017 BALLARI
KABG060003812015 CC-162-2015 BELAGAVI
KABG060010002013 CC-473-2013 BELAGAVI
KABG070002772011 CC-421-2011 BELAGAVI
KABG070002782011 CC-422-2011 BELAGAVI
KABG070008882013 CC-452-2013 BELAGAVI
KABG080009212014 CC-347-2014 BELAGAVI
KABG080009222014 CC-348-2014 BELAGAVI
KABG080010602014 CC-420-2014 BELAGAVI
KABG080016042014 CC-641-2014 BELAGAVI
KABG210029452014 CC-3334-2014 BELAGAVI
KABG410009742015 CC-350-2015 BELAGAVI
KABG510007622018 CC-332-2018 BELAGAVI
KABGB10000152010 CC-322-2010 BELAGAVI
KABC010001152016 SPLC-12-2016 BENGALURU
KABC010004102016 SPLC-19-2016 BENGALURU
KABC010012162012 SPLC-47-2012 BENGALURU
KABC010019492016 SPLC-53-2016 BENGALURU
KABC010022912019 SPLC-52-2019 BENGALURU
KABC010043692012 SPLC-114-2012 BENGALURU
KABC010064172015 SPLC-124-2015 BENGALURU
KABC010068192018 SPLC-135-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010071192018 SPLC-152-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010071202018 SPLC-153-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010080842014 SPLC-124-2014 BENGALURU
KABC010091342012 PCR-33-2012 BENGALURU
KABC010091522014 SPLC-105-2014 BENGALURU
KABC010117502015 CRLMISC-3220-2015 BENGALURU
KABC010125222018 SPLC-286-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010125232018 SPLC-287-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010132702014 SPLC-21-2014 BENGALURU
KABC010144012014 SPLC-6-2014 BENGALURU
KABC010150452012 SPLC-15-2012 BENGALURU
KABC010165252018 SPLC-403-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010195212017 SPLC-394-2017 BENGALURU
KABC010197132012 PCR-55-2012 BENGALURU
KABC010261532016 SPLC-459-2016 BENGALURU
KABC010262762016 SPLC-469-2016 BENGALURU
KABC010262782016 SPLC-471-2016 BENGALURU
KABC010270932016 SPLC-488-2016 BENGALURU
KABC010276112015 SPLC-551-2015 BENGALURU
KABC010296332015 SPLC-596-2015 BENGALURU
KABC010296362015 SPLC-597-2015 BENGALURU
KABC010300322018 SPLC-759-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010313042018 SPLC-796-2018 BENGALURU
KABC010313172018 SPLC-797-2018 BENGALURU
KABC030073452011 CC-7341-2011 BENGALURU
KABC030283682013 CC-7453-2013 BENGALURU
KABC090000082018 CC-5-2018 BENGALURU
KABC090000092018 CC-6-2018 BENGALURU
KABC090000102018 CC-7-2018 BENGALURU
KABC0A0000902015 CRLMISC-5298-2015 BENGALURU
KABC0A0025132012 PCR-67-2012 BENGALURU
KABC0A0025192012 SPLC-47-2012 BENGALURU
KABC0A0025432012 PCR-33-2012 BENGALURU
KABC0A0025562012 SPLC-114-2012 BENGALURU
KABC0A0026012011 PCR-27-2011 BENGALURU
KABC0C0084302018 CC-52537-2018 BENGALURU
KABC0C0193862016 PCR-55750-2016 BENGALURU
KABR010028312017 CRLRP-82-2017 BENGALURU RURAL
KABR040051982017 CC-3436-2017 BENGALURU RURAL
KABD030053152014 CC-1819-2014 BIDAR
KACN020012382017 CC-230-2017 CHAMRAJNAGAR
KACN320013702017 CC-341-2017 CHAMRAJNAGAR
KACM030013572013 CC-545-2013 CHIKKAMAGALURU
KADK070043092016 CC-4066-2016 DAKSHINA KANNADA
KADK070052182018 CC-5111-2018 DAKSHINA KANNADA
KADK330007622016 CC-410-2016 DAKSHINA KANNADA
KADG010006232018 SPLCASE(LOK)-1-2018 DAVANGERE
KADG010008792018 SPLCASE(LOK)-3-2018 DAVANGERE
KADG010014132013 PCR-19-2013 DAVANGERE
KADG010018232018 SPLCASE(LOK)-4-2018 DAVANGERE
KADG010037022017 SPLCASE(LOK)-8-2017 DAVANGERE
KADW010008492018 CRLMISC-203-2018 DHARWAD
KADW010021612013 SPLC(CBI)-27-2013 DHARWAD
KAHS030098642016 CC-5797-2016 HASSAN
KAHV010025022016 CRLRP-151-2016 HAVERI
KAHV010027182013 SPLC(SVC)-12-2013 HAVERI
KAHV030001512011 CC-397-2011 HAVERI
KAHV210008452015 CC-329-2015 HAVERI
TSHC010022042012 CC-500012-2012 Hyderabad
TSHC010022072012 CC-500015-2012 Hyderabad
KAKB420012602013 CC-513-2013 KALABURAGI
KAKB720004272014 CC-122-2014 KALABURAGI
KAKB720006392013 CC-329-2013 KALABURAGI
KAKB720009332013 CC-455-2013 KALABURAGI
KAKL020021162013 CC-723-2013 KOLAR
KAKP020005682014 CC-286-2014 KOPPAL
KAKP410008932014 CC-512-2014 KOPPAL
KAKP410017552016 CC-825-2016 KOPPAL
KAMD410006422014 CC-279-2014 MANDYA
KAMD410018362014 CC-908-2014 MANDYA
KAMD410018882017 CC-1098-2017 MANDYA
KAMD510000672009 CC-64-2009 MANDYA
KAMS030006742008 MISC-5-2008 MYSURU
KAMS030027622015 CC-751-2015 MYSURU
KAMS030087692014 CC-1808-2014 MYSURU
KARC210004962013 CC-268-2013 RAICHUR
KARC510012802013 CC-332-2013 RAICHUR
KA14030017182017 CC-1289-2017 SHIVAMOGGA
KA14030017292017 CC-1293-2017 SHIVAMOGGA
KA14030023532013 CC-1536-2013 SHIVAMOGGA
KA14070006642017 CC-555-2017 SHIVAMOGGA
KA14070006852017 CC-556-2017 SHIVAMOGGA
KASM310028542016 CC-1518-2016 SHIVAMOGGA
KASM630008512013 CC-571-2013 SHIVAMOGGA
KATK210019312017 CC-794-2017 TUMAKURU
KAUK010019722017 CRLMISC-483-2017 UTTARA KANNADA
KAUK010019732017 CRLMISC-484-2017 UTTARA KANNADA
KAUKA30000132017 CRLMISC-5004-2017 UTTARA KANNADA
KAVP030005002001 CC-110-2001 VIJAYAPURA
KAVP030012672013 CC-636-2013 VIJAYAPURA
KAVP030012682013 CC-628-2013 VIJAYAPURA
KAVP030065892015 CC-4511-2015 VIJAYAPURA
KAVP300000292007 CC-58-2007 VIJAYAPURA
KAVP300002082007 CC-441-2007 VIJAYAPURA
KAVP300002092007 CC-488-2007 VIJAYAPURA
KAYG010006362018 CRLMISC-308-2018 YADGIR
KAYG030009092013 CC-241-2013 YADGIR
KAYG310000872016 CC-147-2016 YADGIR

 

The authors would like to thank Sanghamithra K for her research assistance.

The views expressed in this article are solely those of the authors’ and they do not represent the views of DAKSH.

Gaurav Banerjee

Gaurav Banerjee

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