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ADR Report on Political Donations


ADR report on political donations: Relevance

  • GS 2: Development processes and the development industry —the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders.


ADR report on political donations: Context

  • Recently, Association of Democratic Rights (ADR) has released a report where it has revealed that more than 55% of the donations received by regional parties in FY 2019-20 came from “unknown” sources.


ADR Report on Political Donations -_3.1


ADR report on political funding: Key points

  • ADR has analysed 23 regional parties which filed their annual audit and contribution reports, and reported that 54.32% came from “unknown” sources.
  • According to the ADR Report 2021, electoral bonds accounted for nearly 95% of the donations from “unknown” sources.
  • The latest ADR Report noted that donations received by national parties from “unknown” sources added up to 70% of their income.
  • Parties in the south — TRS, TDP, YSR Congress Party, DMK and JD(S) — topped the list of regional parties with highest incomes from “unknown” sources.
  • The donations received by regional parties from “known” donors added up to 22.98% of their total income.
    • Known donors are those whose details are available from contribution report submitted to Election Commission.


Electoral Bonds


ADR suggestions

  • ADR has noted that since a very large percentage of the income of political parties cannot be traced to the original donor, full details of all donors should be made available for public scrutiny under the RTI.
  • Also, any organisation that receives foreign funding should not be allowed to support or campaign for any candidate or party.
  • ADR has also suggested that the mode of payment of all donations (above and below Rs 20,000), income from sale of coupons, membership fees, etc. should be declared by the parties in audit reports, submitted to the I-T department and Election Commission of India.


Supreme Court Verdict on 97th amendment


About Electoral Bonds

  • Electoral Bond is a financial instrument for making donations to political parties.
  • It is an initiative of Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance.
  • Electoral Bond is in the nature of a Promissory Note and an interest free banking instrument.
  • A citizen of India or a body incorporated in India will be eligible to purchase the bond.
  • Electoral bond would be issued/purchased for any value, in multiples of 1,000, from the specified branches of the State Bank of India (SBI).
  • Know more about Electoral Bonds here.

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