Vijay Singh of Congress spent Rs 2.38 lakh on electioneering in 2013 assembly polls and triumphed from Bhagwanpura constituency, while Deewan Singh of BJP spent Rs 2.57 lakh to win the Pansemal constituency. Both MLAs spent only 15% of their Rs 16 lakh expense limit. These figures gain importance in view of demand by several leaders to hike election expense limit. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan too recently raised the issue with CEC OP Rawat. Chouhan had asked the Election Commission to exclude certain campaigning material from poll-related expenditure account

Shivraj Singh Chouhan had submitted expenditure of Rs 10.10 lakh (63% of expense limit) and Rs 9.77 Lakh (61% of expense limit) from Budhni and Vidisha constituencies respectively.  Contestants have often claimed that election expenditure limit set by the ECI is quite low. However, 129 (62%) out of 230 MLAs of the outgoing Assembly had spent less than 50% of their total expenditure limit of Rs 16 lakh during campaigning. On the basis of the expenditure list submitted by the MLAs to ECI, average expenditure comes to a meager Rs 7.64 Lakh, which is 48% of the expenditure limit.

Madhya Pradesh Election Watch (MPEW) and Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) analyzed election expenditure affidavits of 209 out of the 230 MLAs elected in Madhya Pradesh 2013 Assembly Elections.  The average election expense declared by 22 ministers, including CM was Rs 8.07 lakh. Ten out of 23 ministers (43%) declared election expense as less than Rs 8 lakh i.e. 50% of the limit.  Among ministers, Jayant Malaiya incurred an expenditure of Rs 11.79 lakh in campaigning, i.e, 74% of the expense limit). On the other hand, Umashankar Gupta spent only Rs. 3.48 Lakh (22% of expenditure limit). A total of 5 MLAs (2%) declared election expenses as less than Rs 4 lakh (that is about 25% of Expense Limit set by ECI).

The maximum expense of about Rs 15.67 Lakh (or 98% of the expense limit) was claimed by Umadevi Khatik of BJP from Hata constituency followed by Ajay Arjun Singh of INC from Churhat constituency who spent Rs. 13.67 lakh (or 85% of the expense limit) and Narayan Prasad of INC from Maihar constituency with an expense of Rs 13.19 lakh (or 82% of the expense limit).  Out of the 209 MLAs analysed, eight declared that they did not spend a single rupee on public meetings, processions etc. Eighty-seven MLAs (42%) declared that they had not spent any amount on campaigning through electronic/print media.

41 MLAs (20%) declared that they did not spend any amount on campaign workers. These election expense documents include details of expenses on public meeting and processions, campaigning through electronic and print media, expense on campaign workers, expense on vehicles used and expense on campaign materials.

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