Now the Indian elections are fight on the basis of 3Ms; Money, Mind and Muscles. So every political party raise fund through different means. To ensure the transparency in the political funding the central government had introduced the electoral bonds during the budget of the financial year 2017-18.
Electoral Bond definition: Electoral Bond refers a bond which has its specified face value, mentioned on it like a currency note. These bonds can be used by the individuals, institutions and organizations to donate money to the political parties.
These electoral bonds will be available in the denomination of Rs. 1,000, Rs. 10,000, Rs. 1 lac, Rs. 10 lacs and Rs. 1 crore.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced all guidelines related to electoral bonds in the Lok Sabha in January 2018.
Let us know 12 interesting facts about electoral bonds;
1. Any citizen or institution or any company in India can purchase electoral bonds to fund registered political parties.
2. These electoral bonds will be available in the denomination of Rs. 1,000, Rs. 10,000, Rs. 1 lac, Rs. 10 lacs and Rs. 1 crore.
3. Every party which is registered under section 29A of the Representation of the Peoples Act, 1951 and has secured at least 1% votes polled in the most recent Lok
Sabha or State election will be eligible to receive fund through electoral bonds.
4. Every donor has to provide his KYC detail to the banks.
5. Name of electoral bond purchaser will be kept confidential by the banks.
6. Electoral bonds will be valid for 15 days from the date of purchase.
7. No interest will be given by the banks on these bonds.
8. These bonds can be bought from selected branches of State Bank of India only.
9. The banks will have full information about the purchasers of the Electoral bonds.
10. The bonds will be available for purchase for a period of 10 days each in the beginning of every quarter. In the year of Lok Sabha elections; 30 days extra will be provided.
11. Bonds can be purchased in January, April, July and October months of each year.
12. Political parties will also have to inform election commission that how much money they got from Electoral bonds.
Before the budget of 2017, it was a rule that if a political party gets a donation of less than Rs. 20,000 from a donor, then it was not mandatory to reveal the source of fund.
This rule was misused and near about all the political parties said that they received 90% of their political fund in the denomination of less than Rs. 20000. So in this way a huge amount of black money generated and used in the election campaigning.
On the basis of the recommendation of the Election Commission, the government had reduced the limit of anonymous donation to Rs. 2000 only in budget 2017. It means; for a donation of more than Rs.2000, the political party will have to reveal the source of donation.
In the end, it can be said that the release of electoral bonds will restrict the generation of black money upto some extent. Now People will come to know that which party is receiving maximum amount from the donation and who are the donors of the fund.
But some critics believe that in this rule, the identity of the donors will be kept confidential; so the real results of electoral bonds will not be much encouraging.