On an average, the amount spent by the 182 elected MLAs during the recently concluded assembly elections was Rs 16.45 lakh. This was 59% of the permissible expense limit of Rs 28 lakh. Only two BJP MLAs — Rajendrasinh Chavda from Himmatnagar and Mansukh Dindor from Santrampur — incurred an expenditure of 121% and 103% respectively of the permissible amount.
According to an analysis by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), out of 182 MLAs, 54 (30%) MLAs declared election expenses of less than 50% of the permissible limit.

The analysis reveals that the average spending by 99 MLAs of the BJP was Rs 17.34 lakh (62% of the limit). However, the average election expenditure of 77 MLAs from the Congress, was Rs 15.99 lakh each (57.1% of the limit).

As for 2 MLAs from Bhartiya Tribal Party, their average election expenditure was Rs 12 lakh (42.9%). For 3 independent MLAs, the average poll expenditure was Rs.5.37 lakh (19.2% of the limit). The lone MLA from NCP spent Rs 5.74 lakh (20.5% of the limit).

The ADR analysis further states that, on an average, each BJP candidate spent Rs 3.98 lakh to meet the expenses incurred by star campaigners while the same for the Congress was Rs 1.1 lakh.

Similarly, each Congress candidate, on an average, spent Rs 1.92 lakh on campaign material. For BJP MLAs, this was Rs 1.45 lakh each. Interestingly, the BJP candidates spent an average Rs 1.05 lakh on media campaign. This was only Rs 57,000 each for Congress candidates.

The analysis further states that an MLA, on an average, raised 67% of the funds from political parties, 22% by the MLAs themselves and 11% was raised from other sources.

A total of 46 MLAs declared that they had not received any funding from political parties. Out of the 182 MLAs, 116 had declared that they had not received any funds from any person, company, firm or associations.

According to the election expenditure declared by 20 ministers, minister of state Ishwarsinh Patel who is MLA from Akleshwar, spent the least — only 44% of the limit. He is the only minister whose spending was less than 50% of the expense limit. The average spending of 20 ministers is about Rs 17.57 lakh, which is 63% of the expense limit.

Among the ministers, Dholka MLA Bhupendrasinh Chudasma spent 84% of the limit followed by Vasan Ahir (Anjar) and Ramanlal Patkar (Umergaon) — they spent 82% of the permissible limit.

Out of the total funds received by ministers, 53% were raised from political parties, 36% were raised by the ministers themselves and 11% funds were raised from other sources. Out of 20 ministers, eight (40%) have declared that they did not receive any funds from political parties.

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