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Topic – Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability,
2) The Electoral Bond Scheme propagates corruption and inhibits the citizen’s capacity to meaningfully participate in political and public life. Comment.(250 words)
Why this question
Corruption is a critical issue in India and corruption in the one of the basic processes of democracy – electoral funding can be very dangerous. In this context it is important to discuss the Electoral bond Scheme and the impact it has on corruption and democracy.
Comment- here we have to express our knowledge and understanding of the issue and form an overall opinion thereupon.
Key demand of the question.
The question wants us to express our opinion as to whether the newly introduced EBS propagates corruption and inhibits meaningful participation if the citizens in the democratic exercise, or not. We have to form our opinion based on a proper discussion and presentation of valid arguments and facts.
Structure of the answer
Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the Electoral Bond Scheme. E.g The scheme permits not only individuals and body corporates, but also “every artificial juridical person,” to purchase bonds, issued by the State Bank of India, in denominations of ₹1,000, ₹10,000, ₹lakh, ₹10 lakh and ₹1 crore, during specified periods of the year. Issued in the form of promissory notes, once a bond is purchased the buyer can donate it to any political party, which can then encash it on demand.
Discuss how the scheme propagates corruption and hinders the capacity of the citizens to meaningfully participate in political and public life. E.g he scheme allows for complete anonymity of the donor. Neither the purchaser of the bond nor the political party receiving the donation is mandated to disclose the donor’s identity. Therefore, not only will, say, the shareholders of a corporation be unaware of the company’s contributions, but the voters too will have no idea of how, and through whom, a political party has been funded; the programme removes an existing condition that had prohibited companies from donating anything more than 7.5% of their average net-profit over the previous three years which means that even loss-making entities can make unlimited contributions. Additionally, the requirement that a corporation ought to have been in existence for at least three years before it could make donations — a system that was meant to stop shell concerns from being created with a view purely to syphoning money into politics — has also been removed; When the power of that vote is diluted through opacity in political funding, democracy as a whole loses its intrinsic value etc.
Conclusion– based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.