Hyderabad: Hyderabad stood fourth behind Mumbai, Kolkata and New Delhi in the number of electoral bonds raised and sold between March 2018 and October 2019.
According to an RTI reply, Mumbai, having sold 2,899 bonds worth Rs 1, 879.96 crore, topped the list in the sale of electoral bonds by value. The financial capital was closely followed by Kolkata with 3,478 bonds worth Rs 1,440.337 crore and New Delhi with a 1,630 bonds worth Rs 918.58 crore.
Hyderabad accounted for 13.8% of the total electoral bonds sold. It aggregated Rs 846.37 crore from the sale of 1,603 electoral bonds. Interestingly, electoral bonds raised in Hyderabad turned out to be TRS party’s highest donor with Rs 141. 50 crore received from bonds, which amounts to 75% of their funding.
The RTI, which was filed by Association for Democratic Reforms, a non-governmental organization, also revealed that more than half of the electoral bonds purchased were around the general elections. As per the RTI, 59.1% of the electoral bonds were purchased in two months – March and April last year, the phase 8 and phase 9 of their sale, respectively.
As per the response received by the SBI dated December 2, 2019, a total of 12,313 bonds worth Rs 6,128.72 crore were sold since the inception of the scheme in January 2018. The sale and redemption of these bonds occurred in twelve phases from March 2018 to October 2019.
The RTI response also showed that a majority of the electoral bonds received were in the denomination of Rs one crore. Rs 5,612 crore, which amounts to 91.87% of the total number of bonds redeemed during the period, were in the denomination of Rs 1 crore.
The electoral bond scheme, put forward by the NDA government, came into effect in January 2018. It facilitates anonymous funding to political parties via select branches of State Bank of India. These electoral bonds can be issued in multiple values ranging from Rs 1,000 to Rs one crore.