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Electoral bonds: Congress alleges discrepancy in entries of donor and recipient data

Written by  Annesha Barua -- March 15th 2024 10:07 AM
Electoral bonds: Congress alleges discrepancy in entries of donor and recipient data

Electoral bonds: Congress alleges discrepancy in entries of donor and recipient data

PTC News Desk: Congress leader Amitabh Dubey raised concerns over a purported mismatch in the number of entries between donor and recipient files in electoral bond data released by the Election Commission. According to Dubey, the donor file contains 18,871 entries, while the recipient file lists 20,421 entries.

Dubey also questioned why the data provided to the Election Commission covers a period from April 2019 onwards, despite the electoral bond scheme being introduced in 2017.

In a post on social media platform X, Dubey wrote, "The donors' file has 18,871 entries, the recipients' file has 20,421 entries. Why the discrepancy @TheOfficialSBI?"

Echoing Dubey's sentiments, Congress MP and AICC in-charge of Andhra Pradesh, Manickam Tagore, criticized the State Bank of India (SBI) for the alleged discrepancy. Sharing Dubey's post, Tagore remarked, "Ah, yes, the electoral bond scheme, where transparency meets selective amnesia. Donors file: 18,871 entries. Recipients file: 20,421 entries. Coincidence? I think not."

He further added, "@TheOfficialSBI, you've truly mastered the art of hiding in plain sight."

Youth Congress chief Srinivas BV also joined the criticism, taking a swipe at the government over the electoral bonds data. Srinivas remarked that Prime Minister Narendra Modi's slogan of "Na khaunga na khane dunga" (I will neither engage in corruption nor allow others to) implied leveraging threats against companies, orchestrating raids by investigative agencies, collecting donations, and continuously filling the BJP's coffers under the guise of conducting business.

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Electoral bond data released

Ahead of the Supreme Court's deadline in a closely watched case preceding general elections, the Election Commission of India (ECI) unveiled electoral bond data on its official website.

The disclosed information revealed that the top five purchasers of electoral bonds, spanning from a lottery company operating across multiple states to corporations involved in large-scale infrastructure projects like the Kaleshwaram dam, collectively spent over Rs 3,446 crore between April 2019 and February 2024.

Leading the list of donors was Future Gaming and Hotel Services Private Limited, headed by Santiago Martin, commonly referred to as the "Lottery King," with bonds valued at Rs 1,368 crore. Notably, the company has been under scrutiny by the Enforcement Directorate since 2019, with raids conducted in Coimbatore and Chennai in May 2023 due to alleged violations of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

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(Inputs from agencies)


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