Election Commission delists 86 more political parties, another 253 declared 'inactive'
The EC said the 86 RUPPs that have been delisted were found to be "non-existent either after a physical verification carried out by the respective Chief Electoral Officers (CEOs) of concerned states/UTs or based on report of undelivered letters/notices from postal authority sent to the registered address of concerned RUPP".
The Election Commission has delisted another 86 'non-existent' registered unrecognised political parties, raising the number of such organisations red flagged by the poll body for failing to comply with electoral rules to 537.
In a statement, the EC said "immediate corrective measures" were required to be taken in the larger public interest as well as for the "purity" of electoral democracy and hence it has also declared an additional 253 registered unrecognised political parties (RUPPs) as "inactive".
The decision was taken by Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar and Election Commissioner Anup Chandra Pandey.
"The EC today further delisted 86 non-existent RUPPs and declared additional 253 as 'Inactive RUPPs'. This action against 339 non-compliant RUPPs takes the tally to 537 defaulting RUPPs since May 25, 2022," the EC said.
According to reports, the EC said the 86 RUPPs that have been delisted were found to be "non-existent either after a physical verification carried out by the respective Chief Electoral Officers (CEOs) of concerned states/UTs or based on report of undelivered letters/notices from postal authority sent to the registered address of concerned RUPP".
The decision against 253 non-compliant RUPPs was taken based on reports received from CEOs of Bihar, Delhi, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and Uttar Pradesh. They were categorised as inactive, as they have "not responded to the letter/notice delivered to them and have not contested a single election either to the general assembly of a state or the Parliament election 2014 and 2019."
Last week, the Income-tax department had conducted raids against certain RUPPs in some states as part of a tax evasion probe against them. The I-T department is understood to have taken a decision on the basis of the EC action undertaken against the RUPPs in May-June following which it wrote to the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) to take "requisite action under extant legal framework."
After the latest EC action, the 86 non-existent RUPPs, it said, shall be "deleted from the list of register of RUPPs and render themselves liable to be not entitled to have benefits under the Symbols Order, 1968."
The EC said parties aggrieved from the latest order may approach the concerned CEO/Election Commission within 30 days of the issue of this direction along with all evidence of existence, and other legal and regulatory compliances including year-wise (for all years under default) annual audited accounts, contribution report, expenditure report, updating of office bearers including authorized signatories for financial transactions (including bank account).
(With inputs from PTI)