Aditya Kaul

Many candidates who contested the recent elections to the Jharkhand assembly “did not incur” any expense on public meetings and media campaigns, analysis of their expense statements shows.

There are more surprises. Candidates spent just Rs1.98 lakh on an average, which is far below the Rs10 lakh they are allowed to by the Election Commission.

Interestingly, some candidates only spent Rs2,500. This analysis, done by Jharkhand Election Watch (JEW), which is a part of National Election Watch and Association for Democratic Reforms, is based on statements submitted by the contestants.

The report is based on expense statements of 808 candidates from 46 constituencies. “These expense statements include the costs incurred by the candidates and his/her party in the constituency,” a JEW statement said.

On an average, the election expenses incurred by all candidates amounted to Rs1.98 lakh. The report also gave a party-wise break-up of the money spent by candidates. In the Congress, candidates spent Rs5.42 lakh on an average, and in the BJP they spent Rs4.98 lakh. JD(U) candidates spent Rs5.1 lakh and BSP candidates Rs1.3 lakh.

“JEW has been trying to collect statements for 81 assembly constituencies, but has been able to get details of only 46. Twenty threepercent of candidates did not even file their statements,” a JEW report said.

According to norms, it is mandatory for candidates to give an account of their spending within one month of declaration of election results. Out of the 46 constituencies analysed, 185 candidates (23%) did not file their expense statements. This includes 10 candidates from BSP, 6 from JMM, 2 candidates from INC, 6 from AJSU and 1 from JD (U), a statement from JEW said.

Twenty-one candidates from BSP, Jharkhand Janadhikar Party, IND, AITC, Bharatiya Rashtravadi Samanta Party have shown that they spent less than Rs10,000 on their campaigns. Some like Mahendra Bodra from JJP and Bhardul Ram from IND claim they spent only Rs2,500.

Of the winners, MLA Paulus Surin of JMM was the lowest spender (Rs2.70 lakh). Some of the smallest spenders include Krishna Bhuiyan of BSP with Rs9,320, Basanti Munda of AJSU with Rs14,603, Prof. Ram Sewak of SP with Rs47,573 and Abhay Kujur of JMM with Rs54,963.

Only eight candidates have declared that they spent in excess of Rs8 lakh. These include Anil Kumar Buriuly from Congress who spent in the region of Rs9 lakh and Annapurna Devi from RJD who spent a couple of thousands above Rs8 lakh.

© Association for Democratic Reforms
Privacy And Terms Of Use
Donation Payment Method