The Election Commission (EC) this year has increased the expenditure limit per candidate by 75% as compared to 2012. The expenditure limit fixed for this year comes to Rs 28 lakh.

But the recently released analysis of poll expenditure by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) reveals that 101 of the 182 BJP candidates whose expenses were analyzed, had spent only 53% of the Rs 16 lakh poll expenditure limit in 2012. As for the Congress, 37 of the party's candidates had spent only 57% of the limit in 2012.

Interestingly, the lone JD(U) candidate in 2012 spent an average Rs 3.08 lakh on public meetings. The BJP has claimed that each of its candidates had spent Rs 2.5 lakh per meeting or on processions, the Congress had spent only Rs 2.08 lakh.


ADR had analyzed the expenses incurred by 143 MLAs who won in 2012. The ADR analysis reveals that out of these 143 MLAs, all but one had stated that he had spent Rs 36.77 lakh which was Rs 20.77 lakh more than the limit of Rs 16 lakh announced by the Election Commission of India. The only one not to do so was Satish Patel, the BJP MLA from Karjan.

Karjan MLA's expenditure was 130% more than the set limit. Apart from Patel, no other candidate spent more than Rs 16 lakh limit. The second highest spender among candidates was Congress MLA from Garbada seat, Chandrikaben Bariya. Bariya spent Rs 14.55 lakh which was 91% of the expenditure limit.

According to ADC, in the 2012 Gujarat assembly elections, 143 MLAs had spent Rs 12.44crore through their own funding— they had used money from the party and from other associations or their own money. Political parties spent Rs 91.68 lakh on 42 MLAs. There are 101 MLAs who have declared that their political parties have not spend any amount on their election campaign

While four MLAs have also declared that they have not spent any amount of their own for their election campaign, there are 126 MLAs who have declared that no person or company or firm had spent any amount for their campaign.

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