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Election Commission flags discrepancies in AAP’s electoral funding reports of 2014-15

The Election Commission of India on Tuesday flagged discrepancy in funding reports filed by Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party.

The notice served to AAP claimed that the party submitted two contribution reports for the financial Year 2014-15.

The Election Commission of India on Tuesday flagged discrepancy in funding reports filed by Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party. The poll body also threatened the AAP with action for “prima facie failing” to follow its transparency guidelines. Issuing a show cause notice to the party, the EC claimed that transactions through hawala operators were “wrongly disclosed as voluntary donations”. The AAP has been asked to file a response within 20 days, failing which, the EC will decide on the cases on merit based on the information available with it and the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT).

The notice served to AAP claimed that the party submitted two contribution reports for the financial Year 2014-15. The first report was filed by the party on September 30, 2015, while the other was submitted a revised report on March 20, 2017. “The original report contains a list of 2,696 donors with the total donations amounting to Rs 37,45,44,618 and the revised contribution report shows the total amount as Rs 37,60,62,631 received from 8,264 donors,” it said.

The poll panel said that a report was received from the office of the CBDT chairman in 2018 regarding “concealment of donations received by the AAP” during Financial Year 2014-15.

The poll-body, referring to concealment of donations, said the bank account of the AAP recorded total credits of Rs 67.67 crore, including Rs 64.44 crore from donations in excess of Rs 20,001. “However, the party has disclosed total income of Rs 54.15 crore from donations in its audited accounts for the year. Therefore, it has been held by the assessing officer that Rs 13.16 crore have not been accounted for by the party and these donations have been held to be from unknown sources,” the notice read.

The commission further said the AAP made “wrong disclosures” on its official website and also furnished incorrect information to the poll panel.

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