Money Control

The Congress declared the second-highest income of Rs 452 cr, which forms 14.7% of the total income of the six national parties

In the financial year 2022-23, nearly half of the total income of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) came from electoral bonds, according to a report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR).

The BJP earned Rs 2,360.84 crore during this period, with approximately 55% of its income, amounting to Rs 1,294 crore, sourced from electoral bonds. Meanwhile, the AAP declared Rs 85.17 crore in donations through electoral bonds, constituting 53.364% of its total income. AAP's income increased by 91.23% from Rs 44.539 crore during FY22 to Rs 85.17 crore during FY23.

The report analysed the income and expenditure of national parties across India during 2022-23, as declared in their annual audit reports submitted to the Election Commission of India. The six national parties collectively earned Rs 3,076 crore, with the BJP receiving over 75% of this amount, followed by the Congress with 15% (Rs 452.37 crore).

Notably, only the BJP, Congress, and AAP received funds through electoral bonds, collectively amounting to almost half of the total income of all six parties. The Supreme Court recently struck down the scheme, ruling it unconstitutional and violative of citizens' right to information.

Among the six parties analyzed, only the Congress and AAP spent more than their income during the financial year. The Congress's total income was Rs 452.37 crore, while its expenditure exceeded this at Rs 467.13 crore, marking a 3.26% overspend. Similarly, the AAP's total income of Rs 85.17 crore was surpassed by its expenditure of Rs 102.05 crore, resulting in a deficit of 19.82%.

The report highlighted that the most common items of expenditure for national parties in 2022-23 were election expenses and administrative/general expenses. Additionally, it noted that the Communist Party of India (Marxist) was the only party to submit its audit report on time, with others submitting theirs after delays ranging from 5 to 72 days.

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