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Demonetisation leave parties high and dry in poll-bound UP

By Newsd
Updated on :
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The government’s decision to scrap Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency has left many high and dry as Assembly elections are barely few months away.
Though the parties are tight-lipped on the issue but normally they keep aside a substantial amount of unaccounted funds for the poll campaign.
The role that cash plays in polls can be gauged from the fact that as much as Rs 1,039 crore of the total collections by parties over the past three Lok Sabha polls ? 2004, 2009 and 2014 ? was made in cash against Rs 1,299.53 crore by cheques.
Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), which had analysed the I-T returns of political parties, said they declared collecting Rs 2,356 crore during the three parliamentary elections. Of this, 44 per cent or Rs 1,039 crore was in cash and the remaining was by cheque and in kind ? Rs 1,300 crore by cheque and Rs 17 crore in kind.
While cash donations are declared by political parties in line with the Election Commission (EC) guidelines on transparency, seizures during polls indicate that much of the campaign funding is done through black money.
For instance, around Rs 330 crore was seized by the EC in cash during the last general elections in 2014.
Economist S P Tiwari said the governments overdrive to root out black money and usher in an era of transparent transactions will remain meaningless as long as it allows political parties to collect donations in cash.
Reacting on the government’s decision, Samajwadi Party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav on Thursday said the “sudden ban” on high denomination notes showed the NDA government did not keep the plight of people in mind and took the decision with an eye on Assembly elections.
“The sudden ban on high denomination notes has caused immense hardships to commoners, farmers and the poor, the demonetisation has been done by the NDA government with an eye on elections, and not keeping plight of people in mind,” he told.