Supreme Court Directs SBI To Disclose All Electoral Bond Data Available By March 21

Supreme Court Directs SBI To Disclose All Electoral Bond Data Available By March 21

The court directed SBI to provide the bond numbers and also ordered the bank to submit an affidavit by Thursday evening.

Rahul MUpdated: Monday, March 18, 2024, 11:51 AM IST
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Supreme Court of India | File


The Supreme Court took a stern stance against the State Bank of India while hearing the electoral bond case. The apex court questioned why the bank was being evasive in providing information about electoral bonds.

The court directed SBI to provide the bond numbers and also ordered the bank to submit an affidavit by Thursday evening. It must state that they have no remaining information. During the hearing, Justice Sanjiv Khanna questioned, "Once we have given directions, what are we doing today... Many issues will be resolved."

During hearing, advocate Prashant Bhushan raised the issue of not disclosing the names of those who donated money to political parties. In response, Justice Gavai stated that they are not reviewing at the moment.

What the CJI said during the hearing

During the hearing, Justice Chandrachud stated that this court had directed to disclose the information about the electoral bond scheme to end the process logically and completely. In this way, operative instructions were issued in Paragraph B and C.

Under Paragraph B, SBI needs to provide details of the electoral bond purchase by April 12, 2019. It will include names, price ranges, etc. The court said that they had asked for directions from the political parties receiving money through electoral bonds... and SBI was asked to disclose details of each bond issued by the political parties, including the cash on the specified date. It indicates that SBI was supposed to provide details of both the purchase and redemption. There is no doubt that SBI will disclose all information with them. It will include details of electoral bond numbers or alpha numeric numbers.

SBI has to file an affidavit

The Chief Justice said that Salve's statement is that all details will be provided. We direct the SBI Chairman to submit an affidavit by Thursday evening at 5 pm. It has been said that as per the directions given in Para 221, no information has been prevented from being disclosed. After receiving the data from the SBI, the ECI will upload the details immediately.

The Court's ruling on February 15 required the SBI to divulge "all details," such as the purchase/redemption date, the purchaser/recipient's name, and the denomination. The inclusion of the term "including" indicates that the specifics outlined in the judgment serve as examples rather than an exhaustive list. This development represents a notable progression in the court-ordered disclosure procedure concerning electoral bond particulars, originating from a constitution bench decision invalidating the electoral bonds scheme as unconstitutional. Previously, the highest court rejected the bank's request for an extension to provide electoral bond details.

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