Nine electoral trusts donated Rs 6.4 billion to political parties between 2013-14 and 2016-17, with the Bharatiya Janata Party or BJP receiving the maximum donation of Rs 4.9 billion and the Congress Rs 866.5 million, a report said on Monday.
Five national parties received 92.30 per cent (Rs 5.9 billion) of the total donations from electoral trusts, while 16 regional parties got only 7.70 per cent (Rs 490.9 million) of Rs 6.4 billion donations from electoral trusts, a report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) revealed.
The BJP and the Congress are the only two political parties to receive donations from electoral trusts every financial year, it added. Total donations to political parties during 2013-14 was Rs 853.7 million, 2014-15 (Rs 1.8 billion), 2015-16 (Rs 495 million) and 2016-17 (Rs 3.3 billion), the ADR said.
“Between 2013-14 and 2016-17, nine registered electoral trusts donated a total of Rs 6.4 billion, of which only two electoral trusts (Prudent and Samaj Electoral Trusts) have donated more than twice,” it added.
Six electoral trusts, which declared contributions during 2016-17, received a total amount of Rs 3.2545 billion from corporates and individuals and and distributed Rs 3.2527 billion to various political parties, the ADR said.
The BJP alone received Rs 2.9 billion or 89.22 per cent of the total donations received by all political parties from electoral trusts during 2016-17.
Other nine political parties (including the INC, the Shiromani Akali Dal, the Samajwadi Party, etc) received only Rs 350.5 million collectively, the report said.
The Congress got Rs 165 million followed by the Shiromani Akali Dal (Rs 90 million), it added.
Amongst all, Prudent Electoral Trust has received the highest, Rs 2.8373 billion and distributed Rs 2.8372 billion to six political parties during 2016-17.
Contributions received by Prudent Electoral Trust form 87.18 per cent of the total amount donated to all electoral trusts during 2016-17.
During 2016-17, Prudent Electoral Trust donated 88.90 per cent or Rs 2.5 billion to the BJP, while the Janta Nirvachak Electoral Trust donated 100 per cent or Rs 250 million of its total income to the BJP.
Among contributions made by corporates and individuals, DLF contributed the highest overall amount worth Rs 280 million among all donors of the electoral trusts, followed by UPL (United Phosphorus Ltd) and JSW Energy who contributed Rs 250 million each.
According to the report, two individuals donated to the electoral trusts during 2016-17 — Suresh Kotak donated Rs 185 million and Analjit Singh of Max Group gave Rs 10 million.
Top 10 donors have donated Rs 1.9 billion to electoral trusts, which forms 58.57 per cent of the total donations received by the trusts during 2016-17. The report added that 90.29 per cent or Rs 1.7 billion of the total amount of donations made by the top 10 donors was to Prudent Electoral.
Of the 21 registered electoral trusts, 14 have been submitting copies of their contribution report to the Election Commission of India (EC), consistently, since their registration.
Satya/Prudent Electoral Trust and Janhit Electoral Trust are the only two who have submitted their contribution report for all four years, 2013-14 to 2016-17.
Satya Electoral Trust changed its name to Prudent Electoral Trust during 2016-17.
There are 11 such registered electoral trusts who either have declared not receiving any contributions or have not submitted their reports, at all, since their registration.
Kalyan Electoral Trust has not even once submitted its contribution report to the EC since its registration.
According to the rules formulated by the government, electoral trusts are required to donate 95 per cent of their total income to registered political parties in a financial year.
The ADR said that 14 out of the 21 electoral trusts, registered with the Central Board of Direct Taxes, submitted their contribution details for 2016-17 to the EC of which only six declared to have received any donations during that year. One, Janshakti Electoral Trust, was registered only in September 2017.business-standard