New Delhi
Five national and many regional political parties are among those which have not submitted their poll expenditure statements to the Election Commission (EC) even after years have passed, Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) said on Tuesday.
The parties include the Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) among others.
According to the rule, the election expenditure statements of political parties are required to be submitted within 75 days of the completion of assembly elections and 90 days from the completion of the Lok Sabha elections, ADR said in a release here on Tuesday.
Lauding the EC for its notice suspending recognition of the National Peoples' Party (NPP) for failing to submit its expenditure report for the Lok Sabha elections held in 2014, the ADR requested the EC to suspend recognition of those parties which have repeatedly defaulted in submitting their poll expenditure statements for general or assembly elections.
"It is to be noted that NPP failed to submit its election expenditure statements to the EC after repeated reminders while not all national and regional parties submitted their expenditure statements within the specified time limit of 90 days," it said, adding that the EC should issue show-cause notices to the defaulters.
Among the national political parties, election expenditure statements of the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress are not available for five assembly elections held between 2011 and 2015, followed by the Communist Party of India (CPI) defaulting with its submission for four assembly elections, and the CPI-M in one assembly election, it said.
"The availability of election expenditure statements of regional parties is equally worrisome," the ADR said. The JD-U's statements are unavailable for 15 assembly elections, those of the LJP are unavailable for 11 assembly elections, and of the Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) and Shiv Sena are not available for 10 assembly polls held between 2011 and 2015.
While it is crucial for political parties to submit their expenditure statements for greater financial transparency, it is equally important to file the same within the time limit set by the Election Commission and endorsed by the Supreme Court, according to the ADR.
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