NEW DELHI: The number of registered unrecognised political parties has increased two-fold from 2010 to 2019, according to a report by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), a poll rights group.
Either newly registered parties or those which have not secured enough percentage of votes in the assembly or general elections to become a state party, or those which have never contested elections since being registered are considered unrecognised parties.
From 1,112 such parties in 2010, the number of unrecognised registered parties has increased to 2,301 in 2019.
“The number of registered unrecognised political parties has increased two-fold in the last 10 years.
It is important to note that the number of such parties increases disproportionately during the year of Parliamentary elections especially.
“Between 2018 and 2019, it increased by over 9.8 per cent while between 2013 and 2014, it increased by 18 per cent,” the report said.
The registered unrecognised parties analysed in this report declared a total of 6,860 donations worth Rs 65.45 crore during FY 2018-19 and 6,138 donations of Rs 24.6 crore for FY 2017-18, amounting to 12,998 total declared donations of Rs 90.05 crore in two years.
Apna Desh Party of Uttar Pradesh declared the highest donations for both financial years combined of Rs 65.63 crore (4,300 donations) or 72.88 per cent of the total declared donations by unrecognised parties in their contribution reports of FY 2017-18 & 2018-19, the report said.
“Of the 138 parties analysed in this report, more than 50 parties’ contribution reports are unavailable in the public domain for either of the two financial years,” the report said.
Of the total 2,301 registered unrecognised parties as of March 2019, 653 parties or 28.38 per cent of them belong to Uttar Pradesh, followed by 291 parties or 12.65 per cent from Delhi and 184 or eight per cent from Tamil Nadu.
The Election Commission of India issued guidelines on ‘Transparency and Accountability in party funds and election expenditure — submission of reports by unrecognised political parties’ which were applicable to all political parties w.e.f October 1, 2014.
As per these guidelines, all unrecognised parties are required to submit their requisite reports in the office of the respective state CEOs.
On receipt of the reports from the state level unrecognised political parties, scanned copies of annual audited accounts, contribution reports and statements of election expenditure shall be uploaded on the websites of CEOs of the respective states, within three days of receipt of the same for viewing by the public.
In view of the above, this report by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) analyses the status of submission of contribution reports of registered unrecognised parties between FY 2017-18 and FY 2018-19.
The report looks at the number of parties that submitted their contribution reports on time, those that delayed their submission as well as parties whose contribution reports are not available in the public domain after the due date for the said time period.