Crores Spent in 5 Assembly Polls, But no RoI For Political Parties?

30 May

New Delhi: It seems most political parties have failed to secure any return on investment during the recently held assembly polls in five states.

For instance, Akhilesh Yadav-led Samajwadi Party (SP) which spent Rs 13.45 crore on their candidates in Uttar Pradesh (UP) could only win 47 seats. While Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) spent over Rs 4 crore and won only 20 seats from Punjab. It was also a ‘no gain, only pain’ story for CPI (M) which spent Rs 26 lakh and could not win a single seat in four states where the party contested.

The data has been submitted by political parties to the Election Commission of India (ECI) recently. The last date to submit the data was April 14 and most political parties, including the BJP and the Congress, have not filed their expenditures with the ECI so far.

Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has also not shared details of all three elections (UP, Uttarakhand and Punjab) contested by them.

The SP gave Rs. 5 lakh each to its 268 candidates in UP. However, the party, which fielded 311 candidates from the state, didn’t favour 43 candidates.

Curiously, the party didn’t give any money to its own candidates such as former cabinet minister and senior leader Shivpal Yadav who fought from Jaswant Nagar constituency.

As per the ECI, the CPI (M) spent over Rs 26 lakh in four states but failed to make any inroads. The CPI(M) didn’t field any candidate from Goa. Sharad Pawar’s NCP, which won a solitary seat from Goa, spent Rs 42 lakh on their candidates.

Maharashtra Gomantak Party (MGP), a part of the ruling alliance in Goa, had spent over Rs 2.18 crore to get three seats in the assembly election. Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), which won 15 seats from Punjab, spent 20 Rs lakh.

And, Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress, which fielded candidates from Manipur and Punjab, didn’t give any money to their candidates in these states. Similar was the case with Asaduddin Owaisi’s All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, or AIMIM, which fielded a few candidates from Uttar Pradesh.

Political parties forced to go cashless?

Call it the demonetisation effect, except the CPI (M), no party gave money to the candidates in cash. The CPI (M) paid their candidates in cash. The party paid Rs 2.92 lakh in cash in Manipur, over Rs 20 lakh in Punjab and about 1 lakh in Uttarkhand and Rs 60,000 in UP.