AP MLAs spent 15 cr each during polls

New Delhi: Chief Election Commissioner HS Brahma said the poll expenditure of some AP MLAs in General Election was whopping Rs 15 crore. He wondered what would be the expenditure of each MP for winning. “It will be 1:6 or 1:5 of the costing of the Assembly segment,” he said, wondering, “From where does the money come and where does it go.”                     

HS Brahma “Black money impinges democracy. Black money and muscle power disturb level playing field...though money cannot guarantee votes, the one who can spend more has an upper hand,” he said, inaugurating a day-long consultations on 'political, finance and Law Commission recommendations on electoral reforms’. Brahma stressed the need for implementing strong laws regarding the political funding at the time of elections. 

He, however, expressed the feeling that money alone can't ensure a victory in polls on most occasions but it certainly helps candidates have an upper hand. In AP alone, Over Rs 55 crore has been seized by the police and the Election Commission at the time of 2014 General Election. This amount is nearly 55% of the total cash & jewellery seized all over the country during the same period. 

Emphasising the need for stringent laws regarding political funding, the Election Commission said that use of black money during elections had to be checked as it created imbalance in a democratic system. While most of the participants at the consultation agreed that there was need for state funding of parties, they insisted that more consultations were required to work out the modalities in this regard. 

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