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An electoral bond will be valid for 15 days from the date of issue. Photo: Story Pitch

Electoral Bonds up for grabs from 1 January. Know about tax benefits

The Finance Ministry said the 15th tranche of electoral bonds sale will take place from 1 January. One can purchase electoral bonds from select State Bank of India (SBI) branches across the country till 10 January. “The State Bank of India (SBI), in the XV Phase of sale, has been authorised to issue and encash Electoral Bonds through its 29 Authorised Branches (as per list enclosed) w.e.f. 01.01.2021 to 10.01.2021,” the finance ministry said in a notification.

The 29 specified SBI branches are in cities such as New Delhi, Chandigarh, Shimla, Srinagar, Dehradun, Gandhinagar, Bhopal, Raipur, Mumbai, Patna, and Lucknow.

An electoral bond will be valid for 15 days from the date of issue. SBI is the only authorised bank to issue such bonds.

What is Electoral Bond?

Electoral Bond is a bearer Banking Instrument to be used for funding eligible political parties. An eligible Political Party is the one registered under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 (43 of 1951) and secured not less than one per cent of the votes polled in the last General Election to the House of the People or the Legislative Assembly.

The Electoral Bonds shall be issued in the denomination of Rs 1,000, Rs 10,000, Rs 1,00,000, Rs 10,00,000 and Rs 1,00,00,000.

Who can purchase Electoral Bonds?

Electoral Bonds can be purchased by a person who is a citizen of India or incorporated or established in India.

Electoral bonds have been pitched as an alternative to cash donations made to political parties as part of efforts to bring transparency in political funding. The Electoral Bond deposited by an eligible Political Party in its account shall be credited on the same day.

Tax deductions under Section 80GGB

A donor will get a deduction under section 80GGB and the recipient of the political party will get tax exemption, provided returns are filed by the political party. As per Section 80GGB of the Income Tax Act, 1961, any Indian company or enterprise that donates to a political party or an electoral trust registered in India can claim a deduction for the amount contributed.

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