A bench comprising Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramaniam reserved order on the application seeking stay of release of fresh set of electoral bonds ahead of the assembly polls in West Bengal, Assam, Puducherry, Kerala etc.
The bench was hearing an application filed by NGO Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR). The Election Commission of India expressed their disappointment on the stay.
The ECI claimed that they are not opposed to electoral bonds, but want more transparency. However, Electoral Bonds is one step ahead unaccounted cash system.
Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing on behalf of ADR, highlighted the objections raised by the Reserve Bank of India and the Election Commission on the sale of anonymous Electoral Bonds.
He referred to the communications sent by the former RBI Governor Urjit Patel to the then Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, expressing "discomfiture" about Electoral Bonds. He pointed out that the RBI Governor referred to the bonds as a "fraud scheme" having implications on banking system and possibility of misuse.
The Attorney General of India, appearing for the Central Government submitted, that the Election Commission has allowed the sale of electoral bonds from April 1 to April 10.
He claimed that Electoral Bonds will keep black money away from political funding, and will prevent the donors from being victimized. However, during the hearing, the CJI also expressed concern on the fact that political parties might use the funds secured through Electoral Bonds for non-political purposes.