Thursday, December 18, 2014

#ADR submits Memorandum to the SIT on #BlackMoney

Prof Jagdeep Chhokar, Founder-Trustee of ADR, in his letter to Hon’ble Mr Justice M B Shah, Chairman, SIT on Black Money, has stated, “We, in ADR, feel very strongly that the task of ‘preparing a comprehensive action plan, including the creation of necessary institutional structures that can enable and strengthen the country’s battle against generation of unaccounted monies, and their stashing away in foreign banks or in various forms domestically,’ as mentioned in Para 2(iv) of the ‘terms of reference’ of the SIT, cannot be completed unless due attention is paid to the possible use of unaccounted money in the electoral and political processes of the country.

o   Analysis of IT Returns of National Parties between FY 2004-05 and 2012-13 shows that the total income of the parties from unknown sources of income amounted to Rs.4,368.75 crores (72.98% of total income of national parties).

o   Curious cases like that of BSP have been observed where the party has declared total income of Rs.585.07 crores between FY 2004-05 and 2012-13 of which Rs.307.31 crores was from voluntary contributions. But the names and other particulars of these ‘voluntary’ contributors are not known, as the party has maintained that no donations above Rs.20,000 was received thereby not declaring names of a single donor in 8 years.

o   There are very few regional parties which submit their IT Returns and contribution reports to the respective authorities on a regular basis, annually.

o   Political parties either do not file their Election Expenditure statements or do not file them on time. BJP and a few regional parties have not yet submitted their expenditure statements for Karnataka Assembly Elections held in 2013 when the deadline was 22nd July, 2013. Even for the Lok Sabha elections held in 2014, 15 political parties have not submitted their election expenditure statements when the deadline was 26th August, 2014.

o   The National Parties declared a total of Rs.381.81 crores as donations collected in cash during Lok Sabha elections held in 2009 but the sources of these donations remain unavailable