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A report from the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR) and Gujarat Election Watch has shown that between 2011-12 and 2015-16 in Gujarat, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has received more than four times as many donations from the public as all the other national parties put together. Donations the BJP received in Gujarat were also far higher than what the party got in other states, the report said, with 10.04 per cent of all donations the party got in that period (a total of Rs 801.67 crore) coming from the state. Of the total amount political parties received in donations above Rs 20,000 in this period in Gujarat — Rs 97.55 crore —the BJP’s share was 82 per cent.
The Congress received the second largest chunk, though still far behind the BJP at Rs 14.09 crore.Corporates and business houses where the highest contributors to the parties, forming almost the entirety of the amount received by the Congress and the entirety receive by the NCP, and 88.69 per cent of the BJP’s donations. “The source for the data used in the report are the Contribution Statements submitted by political parties to the Election Commission,” Pankti Jog, state coordinator of Gujarat Election Watch, told The Indian Express. “While the EC had issued guidelines to the parties in order to promote transparency in their functioning and to aid the commission in conducting free and fair elections, the Congress submitting its details under protest displays a lack of enthusiasm from the party in promoting and practising transparency and accountability in its functioning.” About Rs 18.66 crore worth of the donations received by all six parties — or 19 per cent — were not accompanied by PAN details of the donor, the ADR report found. The BJP received Rs 10.48 crore of donations without PAN details and the Congress received Rs 8.47 crore. Given the results of its research, the ADR has made certain recommendations to increase transparency in political funding, including that national and regional political parties must provide all information on their finances under the Right to Information Act, which parties have been resisting. In arrangement with thewire.in