Business houses are the largest donors to national parties, suggests a study by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).
The study said between 2004-05 and 2011-12, 87 per cent of all donations to national parties were by these. During the period, national parties got Rs 435 crore as total donation. Of this, Rs 378 crore was by business houses.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) got the largest, Rs 192 crore. It was followed by the Indian National Congress (INC), Rs 172 crore. The General Electoral Trust of the Aditya Birla Group tops the corporate donor list, with Rs 36.4 crore to the INC and Rs 26.6 crore to the BJP.
Torrent Power gave Rs 11.8 crore to the INC and Rs 13 crore to the BJP. The Bharti Electoral Trust of the Bharti Group gave Rs 11 crore to the INC, while Asianet V Holding gave Rs 10 crore to the BJP.
Sharad Pawar's Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) got Rs 1 crore each from Ambuja Cement, Hindustan Construction Company and Infina Finance.
In comparison to the national parties, communist ones got much less. The Communist Party of India got Rs 11 lakh, and the Communist Party India (Marxist), or CPI(M), Rs 1.8 crore.
The INC received most from trusts and group of companies (Rs 70.3 crore), while the BJP got mainly from the manufacturing sector (Rs 58.2 crore) and the power and oil sector (Rs 17 crore). While the INC got Rs 23 crore from mining, construction, export/import sectors, the real estate sector favoured the BJP (Rs 17 crore).
The study was restricted to analysing 25 per cent of the donations received. In September, the ADR had found 75 per cent of the source of funding to parties was unknown.
Parties are required to give the details of donors who have made donations of over Rs 20,000 in a financial year to the Election Commission. For 2012-13, no party except the INC and the CPI(M) had given a report to the poll panel.