As Election in 5 states Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil nadu and West Bengal are going on. In India elections of Lok Sabha and all state legislatures are not conducted Simultaneously as it is done in USA. So, Election, election issues, Election Commission, Modal Code of Conduct, Star campaigner, opinion polls, exit polls, election expenditure, VVPAT machine etc remain in news. In this article, we will talk about Election expenditure incurred by a candidates as well as by political parties.
- Recently Election Commission recommended to Central government to increase poll expenditure seeing safety issues due to COVID-19.
- Following the Election Commission’s recommendation to increase the poll expenditure, the Ministry of Law and Justice approved a 10% increase in the same for election campaigns.
- EC has argued that in order to follow EC’s restrictions on rallies and meetings during a pandemic, a candidate have to make added expenditure.
About Election expenditure
- Rule 90 of Conduct of Election Rules, 1961 prescribes that total election expenditure by candidate shall not exceed maximum limit.
- Any change in the rule requires law ministry’s approval.
- Current expenditure limit for state and Parliament elections differs from state to state.
- A limit has been fixed for all expenses such as prints and electronic advertisements including social media accounts, public meetings, etc.
- EC imposes limits on campaign expenditure incurred by a candidate, but not by a political party.
- Government has amended the rule to allow for the increase in the expenditure ceiling.
- The poll ceiling has now increased from Rs 7o lakh to Rs 77 lakh in Lok Sabha elections and from 28 lakh to 3o.8 lakh in assembly elections.
- The rules shall remain in force until they are denotified by the central government.
- it is mandatory for all candidates to open an account in bank for expenses, payment of which will be made through cheque
- Candidates are required to submit their expenditure statement to EC within 30 days of completion of the elections.
- An incorrect account, or expenditure beyond the ceiling, can attract disqualification for up to three years.
- Rs 77 lakh in Lok Sabha elections
- 3o.8 lakh in assembly elections.
- This limit is only for candidates whereas parties can incur unlimited expenditure.
- Increase in expenditure is approved by Ministry of Law and Justice
- mandatory for all candidates to open an account in bank for expenses
- Expenditure through cheques
- expenditure statement to EC within 30 days of completion of the elections.
- IIncorrect statement can attract disqualification for up to three years.