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This website is a renovated website of Adyar Gopal Parivar. I am Dr. Mohan G Shenoy inviting you to visit and explore the website.
Hindu Festivals
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Crime and the Politicians
Candidates with criminal record
How print and Electronic Media fool the public
By Mohan Shenoy
        The media are eager to increase their readership by publishing sensational stories. Criminal record of electoral candidates is one such sensational story.

        There are, I guess,  certain NGOs calling themselves Election Watch Committee or some such vigilante nomenclature that feed the media with their stories and make hey while the sun shines. What kind of interest they have in putting out these stories to create scare among the public is uncertain. These stories are told in bits and pieces so that the public can be easily fooled.

        "Criminal record" is not defined properly. There is no transparency in the functioning of these so called public interest organisations. The public should be aware of these people who have veiled interests to If the story reveals the nature of the criminal record of these politicians then it would have brought out the fact that these charges have all originated in the wake of the candidates' political activities and not any usual hard-core criminal activities.

        The most glaring example of a political criminal record foisted by the state government against an opposite party leader is that of Uma Bharathi who was charged with attempt to murder in Hubli for her exhortation to the party workers to protest the decision of the then government of Karnataka to hand over the Idga Maidan to Muslim organizations, and the subsequent deaths that occurred during the melees and police-firing that followed.Will any sensible voter consider Uma Bharathi to have attempted to murder any one in the case cited above?

        The Watch Committees wish to sensationalize the issue of charge of criminal record of the politicians to its own glorification and not really to eliminate the practice of the political parties of giving tickets to the candidates with criminal record.If you look at our political leaders in the past, most of the worthy national leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Subhashchandra Bose, Vallabh Bhai Patel, Rajaji, Indira Gandhi, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, and especially George Fernandes, all had criminal charges filed against them, by the governments of the day, but these national heroes were not considered criminals by the Indian public, and for good reason.There are very few real criminals among the candidates but their numbers do not indicate that politicians are basically criminals or that there are too many candidates with criminal record. Most of the politicians have fought for the rights of their party workers and for the party principles. In the course they have had to break the law to some degree such as defying the restrictions imposed by the law and order machinery of the state.

        There are political leaders that have defied Section 144 restrictions or even defied the curfew laid down by the administration to control violence during protests or strikes. These leaders were arrested and criminal charges were foisted on them. FIRs were filed against them and naturally they were criminal cases. But these leaders are not the run-of-the-mill criminals that commit robbery, burglary, rape, murder etc. Because they have these charges foisted on them and the charges come under the Criminal courts jurisdiction, they are called "criminal records".

        They are not really criminals but only politicians that were doing what they thought is the right thing to do to get work done for the people in their constituencies.The stories that the media put out to glorify the "criminal records of the politicians" lump together a large number of good political fighters among the candidates with a very small number of real criminals. This results in sensationalizing the story. They do nothing to help democracy.Such reports in the media are worthy of being thrown in the dustbin.