Electoral Bonds chief source of donations for political parties: Report

Between 2016-17 and 2021-22, the seven national and 24 regional parties received a total donation of ₹9,188.35 crore from Electoral Bonds

July 11, 2023 08:10 pm | Updated 08:21 pm IST - New Delhi

Image used for representational purpose only.

Image used for representational purpose only. | Photo Credit: Nagara Gopal

Electoral Bonds were the chief source of donations for political parties, with the BJP garnering the lion’s share.

Between 2016-17 and 2021-22, the seven national and 24 regional parties received a total donation of ₹9,188.35 crore from Electoral Bonds out of which the BJP’s share was ₹5,271.9751 crore, while all other national parties together amassed ₹1,783.9331 crore, according to the report by the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR).

Also read: BJP declares highest income for 2021-22; Trinamool’s income sees staggering jump: ADR report

The report analysed the donations received by the political parties between 2016-17 and 2021-22.

The time period is crucial, as during this time the Electoral Bond Scheme 2018 was introduced for the purpose of electoral funding as well as the Finance Act 2017 removed the previous limit of 7.5 % of the company’s average three-year net profit for political donations. The report analyses donations from anonymous Electoral Bonds, direct donations from corporate houses and other donations from sources such as from MPs/MLAs, contributions from meetings and contributions from morchas and collection by party units.

The total donations received by the 31 political parties analysed during the six-year period was ₹16,437.635 crore out of which 55.90% was from Electoral Bonds, 28.07% was received from the corporate sector and 16.03% from other sources.

Also read: 66% of income of 7 national parties in 2021-22 came from electoral bonds, other ‘unknown’ sources: ADR

For national parties, there was a 743% increase in donations from electoral bonds between FY 2017-18 and FY 2021-22 while for corporate donations this increase is only 48%.

The total donations declared by the BJP is more than three times the total donations declared by all other national parties, the report said.

More than 52% of the BJP’s total donations came from Electoral Bonds worth ₹ 5,271.9751 crore, while all other National parties amassed ₹1,783.9331 crore. The Congress declared the second highest donations from bonds of ₹952.2955 crore (61.54% of its total donations) followed by the Trinamool Congress which declared ₹767.8876 crore (93.27 %).

As far as the regional parties were concerned, more than 89.81 % of the Biju Janata Dal’s total donations came from Electoral Bonds worth ₹622 crore while the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam declared the second highest donations from bonds of ₹431.50 crore (90.70 % of its total donations) followed by the Telangana Rashtra Samiti which declared ₹383.6529 crore (80.45%) and the YSRCP which declared ₹330.44 crore (72.43%).

The highest donations from Electoral Bonds of ₹3,438.8237 crore were received in 2019-20, the year of the general elections followed by ₹2,664.2725 crore in 2021-22 when 11 Assembly elections were held.

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