EC Data On Electoral Bonds: 25 Companies Spent 50 Times Their Equity   - Vibes Of India

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EC Data On Electoral Bonds: 25 Companies Spent 50 Times Their Equity  

| Updated: March 16, 2024 12:45

The Election Commission has uploaded electoral bonds’ data on its website, two days after it received the details from the State Bank of India. The data was released by the Election Commission following a Supreme Court directive. 

 Nearly 100 listed companies across 32 sectors have contributed to political parties through electoral bonds.  

With a total paid-up capital of less than Rs 5 crore, 25 companies purchased electoral bonds worth over Rs 250 crore — more than 50 times their equity. 

Nine of these companies were set up after the EB scheme was announced in 2018. Some of them purchased electoral bonds soon after incorporation. For example, Tsharks Infra Developers Pvt Ltd and Tshark Overseas Education Consultancy Pvt Ltd were set up with a paid-up capital of Rs 1 lakh each in March and May 2023, respectively. In July 2023, they bought bonds worth Rs 7.5 crore. 

 The turnover and profit of these companies are not immediately available — access to the master data on the website of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs remained restricted through the day. 

But given that some of the companies with paid up capital in just lakhs of rupees purchased bonds worth crores of rupees within months of being set up suggests they were not funding it from profits generated. This, in a sense, suggests that the fears expressed by the Supreme Court while calling the bond scheme “unconstitutional” in February were not completely unfounded. 

 Striking down the scheme on February 15, the top court had said: “Before the amendment, loss-making companies were not able to contribute. The amendment does not recognise the harm of allowing loss-making companies to contribute due to quid pro quo.” 

The amendment to the Companies Act, which removed the cap on corporate donations, previously set at a maximum of 7.5 per cent of a company’s net profit, was also struck down by the apex court. 

Vasavi Avenues LLP, for example, had a capital of Rs 10 lakh, but purchased bonds worth Rs 5 crore three months after it was set up in Hyderabad’s Banjara Hills in April 2023. Aparna Farms and Estates LLP was incorporated at a Banjara Hill address in Hyderabad with a paid-up capital of Rs 5 lakh in August 2020. It spent Rs 30 crore to buy bonds in October-November 2023. 

Incorporated at an address in West Bengal’s North 24-Parganas with a paid-up capital of Rs 1.50 crore in November 2021, Askus Logistics Private Limited purchased bonds for Rs 16 crore between July 2023 and January 2024. 

 Rajapushpa Asset Management LLP was registered at a Telangana address in August 2019 with a capital contribution of Rs 8 lakh. In April 2022, the Limited Liability Partnership spent Rs 5 crore on bonds. 

Another LLP, Yvan Trading & Consultancy, set up with a capital contribution of Rs 10 lakh at a Mumbai address in May 2020, purchased electoral bonds worth Rs 5 crore during October-November 2023. Safal Goyal Realty LLP shelled out Rs 35 crore in November 2023 to donate through electoral bonds. The Limited Liability Partnership came up in May 2013 at an Ahmedabad address with a capital of just Rs 1 lakh. 

Chander Commercials Private Limited purchased bonds worth Rs 20 crore in April 2021. It was incorporated in Mumbai in December 2007 with a paid-up capital of Rs 1 lakh. One of its directors also serves on the board of 30 other companies. 

Incorporated in January 2008 in Thane with a capital input of Rs 1 lakh, Jai Bharat Technical Services Private Limited bought bonds for Rs 10.5 crore in May 2019. At least another six companies incorporated with a paid up capital of Rs 1 lakh each between 2010 and 2017 purchased bonds of Rs 5-10 crore each. 

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