One Vote Annual Conference

A conference on technological interventions in elections




Analysing Electoral Bonds - A talk by Jagdeep Chhokar

Submitted Jan 12, 2022

The Electoral Bonds scheme was first announced by the then Finance Minister of India in his budget
speech in Parliament on February 01, 2017. The heading of the section (consisting to two
paragraphs) in the speech was Transparency in Electoral Funding.
The same afternoon, the FM said in a Media Interaction that “These bonds will be bearer in
character to keep the donor anonymous” [emphasis added]. This is what started doubts about the
actual intention behind the scheme.
Subsequent developments and disclosures, mostly using the RTI law, have confirmed that the actual
intention behind introducing the scheme was not increasing transparency but putting a curtain on
whatever transparency existed.
Some salient features of the scheme and their impact will be discussed during the talk.


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