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Supreme Court registry returns seal covered electoral bonds data to Election Commission

Supreme Court registry returns seal covered electoral bonds data to Election Commission

| @indiablooms | 16 Mar 2024, 09:10 pm

New Delhi: The Supreme Court registry returned the electoral bonds data provided by the Election Commission on Saturday, in compliance with the directive of a five-member Constitution bench, media reports said.

The Commission had requested the documents, submitted in both 2019 and 2023, to be returned so that it could adhere to an earlier Supreme Court ruling which ordered to publish them on its website.

Responding to the Election Commission's plea on Friday, stating it lacked copies of the documents submitted in sealed covers, the Supreme Court instructed the registry to return the papers by 5 pm on Saturday after digitizing them, reported NDTV.

Subsequently, the Commission has been instructed to publish them on its website by 5 pm on Sunday.

In 2023, during hearings on the validity of Electoral Bonds, the Supreme Court had requested current information on funds received by political parties through this method until September, following an earlier request for data in 2019.

It is still unclear, once this data is uploaded, it will reveal new information on the donations, as the details supplied by the State Bank of India was already published on the EC's website on Thursday, the report said.

During Friday's hearing, the Supreme Court bench, led by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, also criticized the State Bank of India for failing to provide the electoral bond numbers. These numbers are crucial for linking the lists of donors and recipients.

"Who is appearing for the State Bank of India? They have not disclosed the bond numbers. It has to be disclosed by the State Bank of India," Chief Justice Chandrachud said when the hearing began, according to the report.

The bench asked the bank to provide an explanation for the lapse during the upcoming hearing scheduled for Monday.

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