Association for Democratic Reforms released a report after analysing assets and liabilities

Total assets of 20 regional parties across India have leapfrogged from ₹482 crore in 2011-2012 to ₹1,315 crore in 2015-2016, with Samajwadi Party (SP), DMK, AIADMK, TDP and Shiv Sena showing a huge increase in the annual declared assets during the period.

The assets of SP alone has gone up from ₹212 crore to ₹634 crore, an increase of 198% during the period, which also coincides with its rule in Uttar Pradesh from 2012 to 2017, said a report by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), which analysed assets and liabilities of regional parties, released on Friday.

Assets of the AIADMK, which has been ruling Tamil Nadu since 2011, has gone up by 155% from ₹88.21 crore to ₹224.87 crore. The principal opposition in Tamil Nadu, DMK, has seen its assets increase from ₹89 crore to ₹265 crore in the same period.

The assets of the TDP, ruling Andhra Pradesh since 2014, have increased from ₹14.6 crore to ₹65.82 crore. TRS, which is in power in Telengana since 2014, has seen its assets jump from ₹5.37 crore to ₹20.61 crore.

The Shiv Sena has reported an increase in its assets from ₹20.59 crore to ₹39.56 crore.

The average assets declared by 20 regional parties have gone up from ₹24.11 crore to ₹65.77 crore during the same period.

However, total liabilities of all 20 regional parties had increased only marginally from ₹47.45 crore to ₹52.21 crore. While 12 regional parties had not borrowed during 2011-2012, the number came down to 9 during 2015-2016.

Among the parties that have reported a decline in their assets is Janata Dal (United), which is ruling Bihar in an alliance with the BJP, whose assets declined by 404% from ₹8.41 crore to ₹1.67.

“The growth in assets of regional parties is mind boggling. There is no scrutiny of where the money is coming from. When source of income is sought from individuals and companies, why is it not applicable to political parties? Even the election bond is opaque,” says Prof. Trilochan Sastry, founder member of National Election Watch/Association for Democratic Reforms.

Regional parties have continued to favour fixed deposits/ deposits to park their funds. Of the total assets of ₹1,315 crore in 2015-2016, as much as ₹1,054 crore is invested in deposits while their fixed assets investments amount to ₹87.80 crore.

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