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Judiciary

Electoral bonds case: SC dismisses SBI’s appeal for extension of deadline

By Mahima Katal      11 March, 2024 12:30 PM      0 Comments
Electoral bonds case SC dismisses SBIs appeal for extension of deadline

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the State Bank of India's (SBI) request for an extension in disclosing the electoral bonds details until after the Lok Sabha polls 2024.

The top court directed the SBI to comply with the court’s orders by the end of Tuesday, March 12. The Election Commission of India, on the other hand, has been directed to furnish the details on its website by 5 PM on March 15.

While hearing the SBI request for more time to provide details of the now-scrapped electoral bonds scheme, the Supreme Court today fielded tough questions to the bank and asked what it has done for the past 26 days?

State Bank of India moved Supreme Court seeking an extension of time till June 30 to disclose details of each electoral bond encashed by political parties. Notably, in its verdict last month, the apex court directed the SBI to furnish the details to the poll panel by March 6.

In its application, SBI said that it needs extra time to disclose details of electoral bonds encashed by political parties. There are certain practical difficulties with the decoding exercise and the timeline fixed for it, the bank further added.

The timeline of three weeks fixed by the court in its judgement dated February 15 would not be sufficient for the entire exercise to be completed, said the bank, adding that, therefore, an extension of time is granted by the court in order to enable the SBI to comply with the judgement.

Meanwhile, the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), chief petitioner in the electoral bonds case, said it is considering all legal options, including opposing the SBI plea in court.

Also Watch: 

Why Prashant Bhushan, a lawyer representing one of the petitioners said that the scheme is dangerous for democracy.


   

Last month, a five-judge Constitution Bench, led by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, unanimously ruled that the electoral bonds scheme and preceding amendments to the Representation of People Act, Companies Act, and the Income Tax Act violated voters’ right to information about political funding under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution.

The bank was directed to submit the details to the ECI in three weeks (until March 6, 2024), which would then be published by the poll body on its website by March 13, 2024.

Read more: SC strikes down electoral bonds scheme: Here’s what the apex court said

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