Congress slams Modi govt’s desperation as SBI moves SC on electoral bonds | Lok Sabha Election News | Trending Viral hub

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File Image: Congress attacked BJP as SBI moved to SC to seek more time to reveal electoral bond details

The Congress on Tuesday attacked the Center as the State Bank of India moved the Supreme Court for more time to reveal details of the electoral bonds, alleging that the Modi government is using the country’s largest bank as a shield to hide its “dubious business.” .

The State Bank of India (SBI) on Monday asked the Supreme Court for an extension till June 30 to disclose details of each electoral bonus collected by political parties. In its verdict last month, the high court directed the SBI to provide the details to the election panel by March 6.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge said the Congress’s stand on the electoral bond scheme is that it is “opaque, undemocratic and destroys a level playing field”.

“The Modi government is using our country’s largest bank as a shield to hide its dubious dealings through electoral bonds,” he said.

No less than the Supreme Court of India had struck down the Modi government’s electoral bond “black money conversion scheme”, calling it “unconstitutional”, “RTI violative” and “illegal” and asking the SBI to provide donor details by March 6, he said. saying.

“But the BJP wants it to be done after the Lok Sabha elections. The term of this Lok Sabha will end on June 16 and the SBI wants to share the data before June 30,” Kharge said.

The BJP is the main beneficiary of this “fraudulent scheme”, he claimed.

“Isn’t the government conveniently hiding the BJP’s shady dealings in which contracts for roads, ports, airports, power plants, etc. were given to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cronies in lieu of these opaque electoral bonds?” he asked. .

“Experts say that the 44,434 automated entries of donor data can be disclosed and collated in just 24 hours. Why does the SBI then need 4 more months to compile this information?” he said.

“The Congress Party was very clear that the Electoral Bond scheme was opaque, undemocratic and destroyed a level playing field. But the Modi government, the PMO and the FM swept away all the institutions – the RBI, the Election Commission, Parliament and the Opposition to fill the BJP’s coffers,” Kharge alleged.

“Now a desperate Modi government, grasping at straws, is trying to use the SBI to overthrow the Supreme Court judgment!” he said.

Congress MP Manish Tewari also lashed out at the government and urged the Supreme Court not to allow the SBI petition. “The Supreme Court should not let @TheOfficialSBI get away with its electoral bond shenanigans,” Tewari said on X.

“People before the general election need to know who got what from whom and whether there was any prima facie quid pro quo involved.” he said.

The Supreme Court should order the lifting of the “corporate veil of the so-called electoral trusts of the SPV to reveal the true identity of the donor”, Tewari said.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday criticized the government over the issue, calling it a “last attempt” before the Lok Sabha elections to hide the “true face” of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

In a Hindi post on

“When the Supreme Court has declared that the people of the country have the right to know the truth about electoral bonds, why does the SBI not want this information to be made public before the elections?” the former head of Congress had said.

In an application filed before the high court, SBI contended that retrieval of information from “each silo” and the procedure of cross-checking information from one silo with that of the other would be a time-consuming exercise.

The plea alleged that due to strict measures taken to ensure that the identity of donors remained anonymous, “decoding” the electoral bonds and matching the donors with the donations made would be a complex process.

“It is alleged that the data related to the issuance of the bond and the data related to the redemption of the bond were kept recorded in two different silos. No central database was maintained. This was done to ensure that the anonymity of the donors..

“It is alleged that the details of the donor were kept in a sealed cover at the designated branches and all such sealed covers were deposited at the main branch of the petitioner bank, which is situated in Mumbai,” the statement said.

In a historic ruling that dealt a severe blow to the government, the Supreme Court on February 15 annulled the electoral bond plan for political financing, alleging that it violates the constitutional right to freedom of speech and expression, as well as the right to information.

In its verdict months before the Lok Sabha elections, the top court directed the SBI to disclose to the Election Commission the names of the contributors to the six-year scheme.

A five-judge constitutional bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud ordered that the SBI must reveal details of every electoral bonus collected by political parties. The information must include the collection date and denomination of the bonds and be presented to the electoral panel before March 6.

First published: Mar 05 2024 | 12:30 PM IS

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