Indian elections cost huge sums of money. This money hardly comes from contributions by sympathizers of the political party but from big corporate houses. Such contributions have largely come from undeclared income/black money and this increases corruption in the electoral process. It highlights the need for implementing effective reforms in electoral finance.In the previous article, we have discussed the Electoral Bonds Scheme for bringing transparency in electoral finance. In this article, we are going to discuss another such reform called State funding of elections as a measure to bring transparency and eliminate corruption in the electoral process.
The recent emergency interest rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India by 75-basis-point (0.75%) in late March 2020 has made Masala Bonds unattractive. Although the recent cut doesn’t really impact many overseas funds, it may decrease the demand for the product due to the change in the highest coupon rate from 13.45% to 13.15%, which assumes a tax ranging from 15 to 40% and thereby reducing the returns for the investor.
Social media has been playing a huge role in elections/politics these days. It can actually have an impact on the decision making of the people. In light of this fact, there is also a question arises whether this increasing role of social media in elections is good or has its own share of downsides?
Elections are the life and blood of modern democracies. The health and vitality of parliamentary democracy are sustained by ensuring free, fair and peaceful elections where the verdict of the people finds full expression. Free and fair elections are important in ensuring the government authority derives power from the will of the people. It is expected that electoral reforms will contribute to better participation of the citizens in electoral practices, reduce corruption and strengthen democracy in India. As a foundation for the electoral reforms, recently, the Prime Minister’s Office had held a meeting with representatives of the Election Commission and the Law Ministry to discuss the possibility of having a common electoral roll for elections to the Panchayat, municipality, state assembly and the Lok Sabha.
Recently the ruling party has launched a series of awareness campaigns to develop a consensus on the issue of holding simultaneous elections in the country. Moreover, organizing simultaneous elections for Lok Sabha and state assemblies is an ambitious task envisioned by the Election Commission. But the Chief Election Commissioner opined that it cannot be implemented anytime soon.