New Delhi: Major political parties such as BJP, Congress, Trinamool Congress and AAP failed to reveal the identities of electoral bond donors in the sealed cover affidavits submitted to the Supreme Court, breaching the apex court's directives.

The Election Commission on Sunday revealed the details of the sealed envelopes that the parties had submitted to the apex court following the court’s directives.

In April 2019, the Supreme Court bench headed by Ranjan Gogoi ordered political parties to submit details of electoral bonds they received, including names of donors of each bond, the amount they gave, bank details with the date of credit.

In its order, the apex court said, “just and proper interim direction would be to require all the political parties who have received donations through electoral bonds to submit to the Election Commission of India in sealed cover detailed particulars of the donors as against each bond; the amount of each such bond and the full particulars of the credit received against each bond.”

It was an interim order on a petition that challenged the constitutional validity of the electoral bonds scheme introduced by the Modi government. Last month, the court's final verdict declared the scheme illegal and ordered SBI to disclose names of electoral bond donors and receivers, and the donation.

While several parties such as JD(S), RJD, SP, AIADMK, DMK, NCP, NC, and AAP had revealed the names of their donors along with donation details in their affidavits, BJP, Congress and Trinamool Congress chose not to reveal donor names at all.

The Election Commission’s unboxing of sealed covers also revealed that most parties didn’t adhere to the apex court’s later direction extending the timeframe for disclosures.

In November 2023, the Supreme Court said that its previous order was not restricted to April 2019. It asked all parties to submit details of electoral bonds they received till September 2023, including names of donors, as directed in its April 2019 order. 

Only DMK, JD(S) and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party submitted complete details till the end of 2023. Apart from these, nine other parties, including AAP,  made full disclosures but only till April-May 2019.

The following are the details of parties that revealed the names of their electoral bond donors to the Election Commission.

Dravida Munnetra Kahzagham (DMK) received Rs 656.5 crore through electoral bonds. Its largest donor is a lottery company, Future Gaming and Hotel Services, which donated Rs 509 crore to the party. It received Rs 86 crore from Hyderabad-based Megha group. Here is a complete year-wise list of its donors.

Janata Dal (Secular) informed the Election Commission that it had received Rs 89.75 crore through electoral bonds till April 2023. Megha Engineering & Constructions donated Rs 50 crore. The Embassy Group donated Rs 22 crore, Shankaranarayana Constructions and JSW Steel donated Rs 5 crore each. Amar Raj Group gave Rs 2 crore, "Biocon Groups" gave Rs 1 crore Bicon Ltd gave Rs 50 lakh, Shahi Exports Pvt Ltd donated Rs 1.5 crore,  Infosys donated Rs 1 crore, Aditya Birla group gave Rs 50 lakh each and Health Care Gobal Enterprises donated Rs 25 lakh.

Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party got Rs 35 lakh from VM Salgaonkar Brothers Private Limited and Rs 20 lakh from VS Dempo & Company Private Limited in January 2022. 

Aam Aadmi Party has also disclosed names of its donors, but only till May 2019. It received Rs 3 crore from Bajaj Group, Rs 1 crore each from Torrent Pharmaceuticals and BG Shirke Construction Technology, Rs 50 lakh from KMZ Investments, Rs 20 lakh from NJK Enterprises and Rs 5 lakh from Rohitasava Chand.

Rashtriya Janata Dal received a total of Rs 2.5 crore in electoral bonds till April 2019. These were donated by three donors. The party has disclosed only the name of Prudent Electoral Trust that donated Rs 1 crore to it through bonds.

Till May 2019, Samajwadi Party received Rs 3.84 crore through electoral bonds. San Beverages gave Rs 30 lakh, SK Trading Company, Delhi gave Rs 10 lakh, AK Traders, Delhi donated Rs 10 lakh, KS Traders, Mohannagar gave Rs 10 lakh, BS Traders, Jaipur and SK Traders, Gurgaon gave Rs 7 lakh and BG Traders, Faridabad and AS Traders Delhi donated Rs 5 lakh each. They received Rs 3 crore anonymously by post.

Janta Dal (United) received Rs 13 crore till April 2019. For donations worth Rs 10 crore, they informed that they didn’t know the identity of donors. “Sombody came to our office on 03-04-2019 at Patna and handed over a sealed envelope and when it was opened we found a bunch containing 10 electoral bonds of Rupees One Crore each,” reads JD(U)’s letter  to Election Commission. Rs 2 crore were donated by Shree Cement Limited and Rs 1 crore by Bharti Airtel Limited.

Sikkim Democratic Front received Rs 50 lakh from Baroda-based Alembic Pharmaceuticals Limited. Chirayu Amin, former Chairman of Indian Premier League (IPL), heads the company.

All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) received Rs 6.05 crore through electoral bonds in April 2019. Most of this, Rs 5 crore, was donated by Chennai Super Kings Limited. Lakshmi Machine Works Limited donated Rs 1 crore and an individual named Gopal Srinivasan donated Rs 5 lakh.

Nationalist Congress Party received Rs 37.75 crore. Bajaj Finserv gave Rs 7.5 crore, Infina Infrastructure gave Rs 5 crore. It got Rs 5 crore from Atul Chordia, Rs 4.5 crore from Avinash Bhosle, Rs 2 crore from Neotia Foundation. Bharti Airtel Limited donated Rs 2 crore. Cyrus Poonawala donated Rs 1.75 crore. Modern Road Makers Pvt Ltd gave Rs 1.5 crore, United Shoppers Limited gave Rs 1 crore, Bhansali Enam and Abhay Firodia gave Rs 10 lakh, Bhuta Shah & Co LLP gave Rs 50 lakh, United Phosphorus India and  Vivek Jadhav donated Rs 50 lakh.

Goa Pradesh Congress Committee received Rs 30 lakh in 30 electoral bonds in April 2019 from M/s V M Salgaonkar & Bros Ltd, Vasco.

National Conference got Rs 50 lakh from Bharti group in April 2019.

Editor’s note: Since the details are still unravelling, we will be updating the story if required.