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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Everyone Will Regret”: PM Modi On Scrapping Of Electoral Bonds Scheme

A move that “everyone will regret when there is honest reflection” and that has “completely pushed the country towards black money” is the elimination of the electoral bonds, which the Supreme Court decided to do away with in a historic ruling in February, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told news agency ANI on Monday.

The Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, has defended the electoral bonds scheme launched by his government to combat the use of “black money” in election campaigns. He defended the scheme as a small way to cut down on “black money” during elections and emphasized that his Bharatiya Janata Party was the largest beneficiary, receiving thousands of crores. Modi also accused the opposition of spreading “lies” about the bonds and claimed that his government had introduced the scheme to cut down on such money.

The electoral bonds scheme, which allowed private individuals and corporates to make anonymous donations to any political party, was struck down by the Supreme Court in February. A bench led by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud ruled the scheme unconstitutional on two counts – violating the people’s right to information and the right to equality. The court directed the State Bank of India (the sole sales point for the bonds) to release data about buyers and beneficiaries.

Mr. Modi pointed out that the 16 companies that bought electoral bonds after facing money laundering cases, and 63% of that amount went to parties other than the BJP. He took a double jibe at the opposition, saying that the work of donating to the opposition would be done by the BJP, and that 63% went to them.

The Prime Minister denied allegations that the political landscape is tilted in favor of the ruling party and cited changes like the new law that allows the government to choose poll panel officials. He stated that the opposition is now included in the Election Commission when the election commission is formed, and that only 3% of cases filed by the Enforcement Directorate were against political leaders.

Mr. Modi also criticized the Congress, which heads the united INDIA opposition bloc, and the party’s manifesto for this election, which he earlier referred to as a “Muslim League imprint.” He said that the Congress’ manifesto destroyed the aspiration of first-time voters and that the biggest loss from the Congress’ manifesto was for the people under 25 years old.

Asked about possible investment in India by Tesla, Inc. boss Elon Musk, the Prime Minister welcomed all such initiatives but pitched for localization, stating that the product should have the essence of India. Musk will meet PM Modi later this month, when he is expected to announce investment plans.

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(Source: NDTV)

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