22,217 electoral bonds purchased from Apr 2019 to Feb 15, 2024: SBI to SC

Supreme Court of India. [File Photo]

New Delhi: The State Bank of India (SBI) informed the Supreme Court on Wednesday, March 13, that a total of 22,217 electoral bonds were bought and 22,030 were redeemed by political parties between April 1, 2019, and February 15, 2024, PTI reported.

In a document submitted to the apex court for compliance, SBI stated that it had provided the details of electoral bonds to the Election Commission of India (ECI) before the end of business hours on March 12, as per the court’s directive. These details included the date of purchase of each electoral bond, the names of the purchasers, and the denomination of the bonds bought.

The affidavit, submitted by SBI’s chairman Dinesh Kumar Khara, also mentioned that the bank had shared details such as the date of encashment of the electoral bonds, the names of political parties receiving the contributions, and the denominations of the bonds.

On March 11, a five-judge Constitution bench led by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud had dismissed SBI’s plea for an extension of time and ordered the bank to disclose the electoral bond details to the EC by the close of business hours on March 12.

The Supreme Court also instructed the EC to publish the details shared by SBI on its official website by 5 pm on March 15.

On February 15, a five-judge Constitution bench invalidated the GoI’s electoral bonds scheme, which allowed anonymous political funding, deeming it “unconstitutional.” The court directed the EC to disclose the names of donors, the amounts donated by them, and the recipients by March 13.

As part of closing down the scheme, the apex court mandated SBI, the authorised financial institution under the scheme, to provide details of electoral bonds purchased since April 12, 2019, to the EC by March 6.

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