The contribution reports of only 78 (3.39%) of the total 2,301 registered unrecognised political parties are available in the public domain for 2018-19, while the reports of only 82 such parties (3.56%) for 2017-18 are uploaded on the respective State Chief Electoral Officers’ websites, according to the Association For Democratic Reforms (ADR).

The number of these parties increased two-fold in the last 10 years, from 1,112 in 2010 to 2,301 in 2019. The figure spiked disproportionately during the year of parliamentary election. “Between 2018 and 2019, it increased by over 9.8%, while between 2013 and 2014, it increased by 18%,” said an ADR report.

There are 2,360 political parties registered with the Election Commission of India and 2,301 or 97.50% of them are unrecognised.

“Either newly registered parties or those which have not secured enough percentage of votes in Assembly or General Elections to become a State party or those which have never contested in elections since being registered are considered unrecognised parties,” it said. Such parties don’t enjoy all the benefits extended to the recognised parties.

The reports analysed by the ADR declared 6,860 donations worth ₹65.45 crore during 2018-19 and 6,138 donations of ₹24.6 crore for 2017-18. The Apna Desh Party of Uttar Pradesh declared the highest donations for both financial years, involving ₹65.63 crore.

In 2017-18, only 39 registered such parties had submitted contribution reports before the due date and in 2018-19, only 38 did so. The delay in submissions ranged from a minimum of one day to 514 days.

“Of the 138 parties analysed for the two-year period, the contribution reports for 2017- 18 are not available for 56 parties. In the case of 2018-19, the reports are not available on the CEO website for 60 parties at the time of making this report,” said the ADR.

State-wise, 653 parties or 28.38% belong to Uttar Pradesh, followed by 291 parties or 12.65% from Delhi and 184 or 8% from Tamil Nadu. Himachal Pradesh had the maximum share of submission in 2017-18, with five of the 6 registered unrecognised parties furnishing the contribution reports.

In 2018-19, of the 132 parties from Bihar, reports of only 21, and that of only 20 of the 653 parties of Uttar Pradesh are there in the public domain. In Delhi, 6.19% or 18 parties’ reports are available for 2017-18. However, no such donation statement is there for 2018-19.

“The contribution reports of none of the registered unrecognised political parties of 25 States/UTs including Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana, Himachal Pradesh etc. are available on the respective State CEO websites for 2018-19... for 2017-18, contribution reports of parties of 21 states/UTs are not available on the respective State CEO websites at the time of preparation of this report,” said the ADR, terming it a violation of the ECI guidelines.

Corporate donations

In terms of sector-wise donations, 761 contributions were made by corporate/business sectors amounting to ₹14.47 crore, amounting to 16.07% of total donations, while 11,997 individual donors contributed ₹73.57 crore in two years. In all, 57 parties reported no donations.

The parties received ₹79.05 crore (85.79%) by cheque or draft. However, 10,462 donations involving ₹76.71 crore had incomplete cheque/draft details. In all, ₹10.44 crore was contributed through bank transfer and only 0.28% received in cash.

Of the total 12,998 donations involving ₹90.05 crore in both the years, the parties did not declare PAN details of 1,528 donations worth ₹5.47 crore.

A total of ₹54.20 crore via 3,511 donations was given to the parties from Gujarat, followed by ₹12.23 crore via 6,526 donations from Maharashtra and Rs. 3.29 crore via 179 donations from Uttar Pradesh.

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