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Meghalaya a top donation destination for political parties, BJP biggest gainer

The tiny northeastern state of Meghalaya has emerged as a big source of cash for national political parties, coming second only to Karnataka.

india Updated: Dec 21, 2016 13:16 IST
Saubhadra Chatterji
Political donations
According to data compiled by the Association of Democratic Reforms, the northeastern state of Meghalaya is second biggest source of political donations, with the bulk of this directed towards the BJP. (Sunil Ghosh/HT File Photo)

The tiny northeastern state of Meghalaya has emerged as a big source of cash for national political parties, coming second only to Karnataka.

The Congress-ruled state marked the highest contribution of cash donations while Delhi came in third, followed by Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.

A report compiled by Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) on political funding shows that Karnataka, another Congress-ruled state, has seen the maximum cash flow — Rs 80 lakhs — to parties in the last financial year. Contributions amounting to Rs 21.54 lakhs have come from Meghalaya.

Overall, there is a slump in cash donations to political parties after the Election Commission declared in August 2014 that “no tax deduction shall be allowed on the contributions made in cash by any person or company to a political party”.

As the donors became choosy about pouring money in political parties, they favoured promoting the BJP.

The total donations above Rs 20,000 (the limit for undisclosed donations) amounted to Rs 102.02 crores for the year 2015-16.

Of this, the BJP received Rs 76.85 crore while the Congress got just Rs 20.42 crores.

The total donations of the National Parties during the 2015-16 financial year decreased by Rs 528.67 crores — amounting to 84% of the financial year 2014-15.

Also read | Enough provisions to scrutinise accounts of political parties: Tax board