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BJP, Cong among parties yet to submit details to EC on electoral bonds

PTI     June 4, 2019

(Eds: Updating with more details) New Delhi, Jun 4 (PTI) The BJP, the Congress and the DMK were among the political parties that were yet to submit the details of donations received till date through electoral bonds to the Election Commission (EC), sources said on Tuesday. May 30 was the deadline to submit the details as per a Supreme Court directive. The Congress, however, said its leader Motilal Vora had, on May 30, written to the State Bank of India (SBI) and the EC, asking the bank to comply with the apex court order and provide the information in a sealed cover to the poll panel, as the party did not know who had bought these bonds. The Congress said it had asked the bank to furnish the information to the EC. Last month, the EC had written to all the recognised political parties, asking them to comply with the Supreme Court directives. Sources aware of the development said the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Congress and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) "at least" were yet to comply with the direction. Lifting the veil of anonymity from the government's political funding scheme, the Supreme Court had, on April 12, directed the political parties to furnish all the details of funds received through electoral bonds in a sealed cover to the EC by May 30. Explaining its stand, the EC said it was "exclusively confined to one of transparency in political funding and not on the merits of the scheme". As per the scheme, electoral bonds may be purchased by a person, who is a citizen of India, or an entity incorporated or established in India A person can buy electoral bonds either singly or jointly with other individuals. Only the parties registered under section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and which secured not less than one per cent of the votes polled in the last general election to the House of People or the Legislative Assembly of a state, will be eligible to receive electoral bonds. As per the notification, electoral bonds will be encashed by an eligible political party only through a bank account with an authorised bank. The SBI, in the sixth phase of the sale, had been authorised to issue and encash electoral bonds through its 29 authorised branches from November 1-10, 2018. The Centre and the EC had taken contrary stands in the court over political funding with the government wanting to maintain the anonymity of the donors and the poll panel batting for revealing their names for transparency. PTI NAB/SKC RC


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