Disclose details of electoral bonds before May 30: SC to political parties

Topics Electoral Bond

Illustration by Binay Sinha
The Supreme Court on Friday said that all political parties who have received donations through electoral bonds must submit details to the Election Commission of India in a sealed cover before May 30.

In an interim order, the apex court asked political parties to give details of donors who donated through electoral bonds, amounts received from them, details of payment received on each bond etc. to the poll panel.

The court said the issue requires detailed hearing and so it will announce the date for final hearing later. "We will examine in detail changes made in law and ensure balance does not tilt in favour of any party," the court said.

The top court also directed the Finance Ministry to reduce window of purchasing electoral bonds from 10 days to five days in April-May.

Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), an NGO filed an application in the apex court seeking stay on the Electoral Bond Scheme, 2018 which was notified by Centre in January last year. In its plea, ADR had said amendments carried out in relevant Acts have "opened the floodgates to unlimited corporate donations to political parties and anonymous financing by Indian as well as foreign companies which can have serious repercussions on the Indian democracy".

The government has defenced electoral bonds in the top court arguing the scheme was "a pioneering step" to bring poll reforms "ensuring transparency" and "accountability" in political funding.

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