The business of politics seems to be thriving despite the economic slowdown, going by the income-tax returns filed by key national parties for 2012-13. With thousands of registered political parties with the Election Commission not declaring their tax returns, the actual amount of their income is anybody’s guess.

In 2012-13, the total income of key national parties stood at Rs 991.20 crore, says an analysis of their IT returns filed with the Election Commission. The expenditure of these parties in this year stood at Rs 648.7 crore.

The national parties include the Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, Nationalist Congress Party, Communist Party of India and Communist Party of India (Marxist), according to the analysis done by the Association of Democratic Reforms (ADR).

The lion’s share of the declared income belongs to the two top parties. Congress had the highest total income of Rs 425.69 crore, followed by BJP with Rs 324.16 crore. BSP declared Rs 87.63 crore income, followed by NCP with Rs 26.56 crore, CPI Rs 1.07 crore and CPI(M) Rs 126.09 crore for FY 2012-13.

Corporate and business donors top the list of contributions with 72 per cent to the national parties, followed by individual donations at 17 per cent. A significant 11 per cent or Rs 11.14 crore was donated by those who cannot be traced by name or address, says ADR, which has demanded that details of all donors, even to Electoral Trusts, should be available in the public domain.

Top corporate donors to national Parties

• Congress: Torrent Power Ltd donated the maximum - Rs 3.50 crore, followed by Torrent Pharma - Rs 1.50 crore and Hyderabad Ind Ltd - Rs 50 lakh

• BJP: General Electoral Trust of the Aditya Birla Group donated the maximum - Rs 7.50 crore, followed by Lodha Dwellers - Rs 6.99 crore and Torrent Power - Rs 6.57 crore

• CPI and CPM: CPI received a total of Rs 4.21 lakh from organisations such as Bhartiya Khet Mazdoor Union, while CPM received Rs 1.43 crore from 29 corporate/ business houses.