Supreme Court denies Immunity to Lawmakers in Bribery Cases

Supreme Court denies Immunity to Lawmakers in Bribery Cases mind map
Recent News
Supreme Court Decision
March 4, 2024
Seven-judge Bench
Integrity of Legislative Process
No place for immunity in bribes
Legal Proceedings
Review and judgment by Supreme Court
Overruled 1998 verdict
Articles 105(2) and 194(2)
Indian Constitution
MPs and MLAs
No immunity for bribery
Two-fold test
Determine extent of privilege
Sita Soren v Union of India
Case Details
Sita Soren
MLA, Jharkhand Mukti Morcha
Bribe for Rajya Sabha vote, 2012
Previous High Court Decision
No immunity if bribe conditions not met
Special Leave Petition
Supreme Court
Reference to Larger Bench
Importance of public issue
Upholds Democracy
Ensures accountability
Prevents Corruption
Limits misuse of immunity
Potential for Misuse
Abuse of legislative privilege
Delayed Justice
Protracted legal proceedings
Way Forward
Reform Legislative Immunity Laws
Narrow scope
Independent Oversight and Accountability
Ethics Committees
External Oversight
Swift and Transparent Legal Processes
Fast-Track Judicial Proceedings
Transparency in Legal Actions
Anti-Corruption Measures
Strengthen laws
Whistleblower Protection
Public Engagement and Education
Civic Education
Open Dialogue
Media and Civil Society Oversight
Investigative Journalism
Civil Society Watchdogs
International Best Practices
Regular Review and Reform
Periodic Review
Public Pressure and Elections
Voter Awareness
Accountability at the Ballot Box

The Supreme Court of India has recently made a landmark ruling that Members of Parliament (MPs) and Members of Legislative Assemblies (MLAs) do not possess immunity from prosecution for bribery related to their speech or vote in the legislature. This decision, which came from a unanimous verdict by a seven-judge constitution bench, overturns a previous 1998 verdict that had granted such immunity. The case in question involved Sita Soren, an MLA accused of accepting a bribe for her vote in the Rajya Sabha elections of 2012. The court’s ruling emphasizes the importance of integrity in the legislative process and the accountability of lawmakers, marking a significant shift in how legal immunity under Articles 105(2) and 194(2) of the Indian Constitution is interpreted in relation to acts of bribery​​​​.

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