The Election Commission had in May written to all recognised political parties to comply with the Supreme Court’s directives on electoral bonds for political funding. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

BJP, Congress Miss Supreme Court Deadline To Submit Details To Election Commission On Electoral Bonds

The Bharatiya Janata Party, the Congress and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam are among the political parties, which are yet to submit to the Election Commission details of donations received till date through electoral bonds, sources said on Tuesday.

May 30 was the deadline to submit the details according to a Supreme Court directive.

The EC had in May written to all recognised political parties to comply with the Supreme Court's directives on electoral bonds.

Sources aware of the development said the BJP, Congress and DMK "at least" have not yet complied with the direction.

Lifting the veil of anonymity from the government's political funding scheme, the Supreme Court had on April 12 directed parties to furnish by May 30 all details of funds received through electoral bonds to the Election Commission in a sealed cover.

Explaining its stand, the EC said it was "exclusively confined to one of transparency in political funding and not on merits of the scheme".

According to 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 being an individual can buy electoral bonds, either singly or jointly with other individuals.

Only political parties registered under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, and which secured not less than 1 percent of votes polled in the last general elections to the House of the People or the Legislative Assembly of the State, will be eligible to receive electoral bonds.

According to the notification, electoral bonds will be encashed by an eligible political party only through a bank account with an authorised bank.

The State Bank of India in the sixth phase of sale had been authorised to issue and encash electoral bonds through its 29 authorised branches from Nov. 1-10, 2018.

The Centre and the EC had taken contrary stands in the court over political funding with the government wanting to maintain anonymity of donors of bonds and the poll panel batting for revealing names of donors for transparency.

Also read: SBI Sold Over Rs 5851 Crore Worth of Electoral Bonds in 10 Months

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