THE Election Commission of India has reduced the limit of cash transactions by candidates for campaigning purposes from INR 20,000 to INR 10,000 per day to checking flow of excess money in electioneering. The ECI has directed all chief electoral officers, the EC to ensure that its directive is not violated in the five poll bound states. For transactions beyond Rs 10,000, the candidates and parties will have to make payment using cross cheques, drafts or electronic means, including NEFT/RTGS, through the account of the candidate opened for electioneering. In April, 2011, the EC had set the daily cash limit to Rs 20,000. But now it has been revised keeping in mind the amendments in section 40A(3) of the Income Tax Act in 2017.The directive has come into being from November 12 and would have a bearing on Assembly polls in Chhattisgarh, Mizoram, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. A candidate cannot receive donation or loan in cash, in excess of Rs 10,000 from a single person or entity during campaigning. The election watchdog has been pushing for greater transparency in election-related expenditure by parties and candidates. Like individuals, there should be a ceiling on expenditure made by political parties during polls, according to a 2015 Election Commission draft document based on the ‘general agreement’ among participants.
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