SBI Electoral Bond Case: This Is How Political Leaders Reacted To Supreme Court's Order To Bank To Reveal Details By March 12

SBI Electoral Bond Case: This Is How Political Leaders Reacted To Supreme Court's Order To Bank To Reveal Details By March 12

This decision has been welcomed by the leaders, with some calling it a "tough stand".

Vishakha SonawaneUpdated: Monday, March 11, 2024, 01:07 PM IST
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In a major turn of events on Monday, the Supreme Court ordered the State Bank of India (SBI) to furnish electoral bond details and dismissed the bank's plea for extension. The apex court directed the SBI to make the details public by the close of business hours March 12. This decision has been welcomed by the leaders, with some calling it a "tough stand".

What did the Supreme Court say?

On Monday, the Supreme Court rapped the SBI and ordered it to make the details regarding the electoral bonds public. The bank had sought an extension of time, until June 30, for furnishing the details. However, this was struck down by the Supreme Court and ordered to release the details by March 12 during business hours.

If failed to follow the order, the Supreme Court said it will initiate contempt proceedings against the SBI. The court also ordered the Election Commission of India to upload the data shared by the SBI on its official website by March 15.

'What is the extent of matching done?'

Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud pulled up the SBI over the progress it made so far. "Our judgment was issued on February 15. Today, it is March 11. In the last 26 days, what is the extent of matching done by you? The affidavit is silent on this. We expect a degree of candour from the State Bank of India."

On February 15, the Constitution Bench invalidated the Electoral Bonds Scheme, 2018, and directed the SBI to stop issuing them immediately. It mandated SBI to submit details of Electoral Bonds purchased since April 2019 to the Election Commission by March 6 for publication on its website.

The court's ruling also underscored the SBI's responsibility to disclose specific details of each encashed Electoral Bond by political parties, including the encashment date and denomination. This information is required to be submitted within three weeks from the date of the judgment, effectively by March 6.

Leaders react

Rajasthan's ex-chief minister Ashok Gehlot said that the apex court did the "right thing" by ordering it to disclose the electoral bond details.

"The Supreme Court has done the right thing by asking (SBI) to disclose details of electoral bonds by tomorrow. I am sure that Supreme Court will understand the seriousness of the matter and give a verdict that will teach a lesson to those who tried to befool the court," Gehlot told PTI

Advocate Prashant Bhushan said, "The Supreme Court has taken a tough stand on the SBI's application for extension of time till June 30 to disclose details about donors of electoral bonds as well as the parties which redeemed these electoral bonds. The court has dismissed the application of the SBI, pointing out that the data that the court had asked them to give is already available with the SBI as per their affidavit, they've to submit the details of the donors and details of the parties which redeemed these electoral bonds."

Odisha Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain called it the "biggest scam" in the country's electoral history. "It will open the pandora's box, it is the biggest scam in country's electoral history," he said.

Congress leader Jaya Thakur said, "I am happy with this decision. The court has taken its decision considering the seriousness of this issue."

BJP leader Prithiviraj Harichandan said, It should be thoroughly examined whether electoral bonds have reduced political corruption or it has increased, it should be re-examined by the court itself and it is my personal request."

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