- City wise electoral bonds sold between March 2018 to October 2019 ( 12 phases )
1. Mumbai: Rs 1880 Cr
2. Kolkata: Rs 1440 Cr
3. New Delhi: Rs 919 Cr
4. Hyderabad: Rs 838 Cr
5. Other states ( put together): Rs 1051 Cr
* 12313 electoral bonds worth Rs 6128 Cr sold from March 2018 to October 2019
Hyderabad: Hyderabad is the fourth highest donor to political parties, in the form of electoral bonds revealed the analysis of ADR. The city has raised bonds worth Rs 838 Crore between March 2018 to October 2019.
In April alone, Hyderabad’s SBI branches sold bonds worth Rs 338.07 crore, the highest of all.
In a revelation of sorts, since the highly debatable scheme was made available, over 12, 313 electoral bonds worth Rs 6128 Crore were sold. Mumbai tops the donor’s chart with Rs 1880 Crore bonds purchased, closely followed by Kolkata (Rs 1440Cr), Captial city New Delhi ( Rs 919 Cr) and Hyderabad Rs 838 Crore.
Interestingly, funding through the back door continued after the Lok Sabha polls, In June 2019, few days after the polls Rs 45 worth bonds was raised. And in October it jumped to Rs 232 Crore, indicating that anonymous donors continue to feed political parties financially.
A breakup into the bond purchase chain revealed the highest purchase were made in April 2019, i.e. Rs 2256. That goes without saying that funding was done before the Lok Sabha polls ( May 2019 ) followed by March Rs 1366 Cr. In the electioneering month, Rs 822 Crore worth bonds were purchased, the 3rd highest since the scheme was made available.
Out of the total Rs 6128 Crore raised, Rs 20 lie unused. The amount goes directly into the Election Commission’s kitty.
The electoral bond scheme – which was introduced by the NDA-II government in January 2018, envisaged aimed at improving transparency and cleaning up black money. However, it garnered criticism by the Election Commission and a range of non-governmental organisations, especially election watchers.
Professor Jagdeep Chhokar – the representative of the Association of Democratic reform – an election watch body who filed a petition seeking a stay on the sale of electoral bonds, said “The high purchase of electoral bonds during the elections months indicates that a lot of money is pumped into the electioneering. However as it has been pointed out, including by the Election commission in its affidavit to the Supreme court, bonds purchases do not bring any transparency to the electoral funding a lot. As a matter of fact, these bonds raises have removed whatever resembles of transparency was there in the political funding.
He further adds, “This gateway seems to be the safest way of flushing out black money as the identification of donor is concealed and escapes from the tax net. This apart bonds are used by the corporates to fund their respective parties for benefits”.
— ADR India (@adrspeaks) November 1, 2019