A strong and visionary political party should be the epitome of accountability and transparency (“Demanding transparency in political finance,” July 22). Elections are one of the strongest weapons available to people in a democracy. A corrupt election process will derail the nation. In India, the finances and fund management of political parties are shrouded in mystery. Such secrecy goes against the spirit and ethos of democracy. Political parties should firmly believe in ethical competition and take pride in fighting elections in an atmosphere powered by a level-playing field. It is beyond doubt that the nation needs a strong law with more teeth to deal with fund utilisation of political parties.

Arjun R. Shankar,

Thiruvananthapuram

As the saying goes “When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first to be bought and sold are legislators.” On paper, the major sources of income for political parties are donation and voluntary contributions. However, most donations come from undisclosed contributors.

When a donor gives a political party money, he obviously expects something in return. Political parties are funded by industrialists and big trading houses, which expect politicians to bend the rules in their favour.

Preet Simar Johal,

Jalandhar

There can be no second opinion that political parties need finances to keep themselves afloat and that they survive on donations. They maintain accounts and prepare financial statements and submit the same to the authorities for scrutiny. What, then, prevents them from publishing the details or coming under the RTI?

C.R. Ananthanarayanan,

Bangalore

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