Monday, 30th October 2017

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SC refuses interim stay on poll bonds

The petitioner alleged that the electoral bond scheme was meant to channel black money in favour of a ruling party

By PTI in New Delhi
  • Published 21.01.20, 2:31 AM
  • Updated 21.01.20, 2:31 AM
  • a min read
The Supreme Court File picture

The Supreme Court on Monday sought responses from the Centre and the Election Commission within two weeks on a plea seeking a stay on the electoral bond scheme, which allows corporate houses and others to donate anonymously to political parties.

The bench of Chief Justice S.A. Bobde and Justices B.R. Gavai and Surya Kant refused to grant an interim stay on the scheme. The government has opened the sale of electoral bonds for 10 days ahead of next month’s Delhi Assembly elections.

Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the petitioner — the Association for Democratic Reforms, an NGO — alleged that the scheme was meant to channel unaccounted black money in favour of the ruling party.

“We will see (about) that. We are listing it after two weeks,” the bench said.

Under the scheme, which the Narendra Modi government notified in January 2018, any citizen of India may buy electoral bonds, singly or jointly with others, and so can any entity incorporated or established in India.

The only eligible receiver of the bonds are registered political parties that secured not less than one per cent of the votes polled in the last general election or Assembly polls.

An eligible political party can cash electoral bonds only through an account with an authorised bank.