People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 18

May 01, 2011


EC Issues Notice To Mamata

From Our Special

Correspondent in Kolkata


The allegation that Trinamool Congress is using black money in a dubious manner has been proved. The Election Commission has asked the RBI to inquire into the conduct of Allahabad Bank and United Bank of India which issued demand drafts of Rs 1.33 crore for Trinamool Congress in West Bengal, violating EC guidelines on election expenditure. 


The EC has also issued a letter to TMC asking it to explain the "circumstances under which the pay orders got issued by deposit of cash, in violation of RBI guidelines without routing it through the bank account and the Commission's instructions on the subject (election expenditure)."


The notice has been served straight to TMC chief and railway minister Mamata Banerjee. In its letter, the EC stated: "It has been reported that your party (TMC) has got issued pay orders aggregating to Rs 1.23 crore by the United Bank of India on March 23, 2011 in favour of Ms Visual Audio and draft of Rs 10 lakh by Allahabad Bank on April 24, 2011 in favour of Ms Power Global Access India Private Limited by deposit of cash.


"It may be mentioned here that the Commission in its all party meeting (at its headquarters in the national capital) and through various instructions has advised all the parties to avoid transactions in cash during election process". The EC's action came after an Income Tax investigation report was received by it recently in the case.


The EC, while issuing separate letters to both the banks -- Allahabad Bank branch at 2, N S Road in Kolkata and United Bank of India at 1, Hemanta Basu Saran at Kolkata -- to "explain the circumstances under which such drafts were made."


"The Reserve Bank of India guidelines of 2009 categorically prohibit any remittance of funds by way of demand draft or telegraphic transfer or any other mode for value of Rs 50,000 and above against cash payment.


"Besides, the EC is concerned about cash transactions during the election campaign as such transactions vitiate the election process," the EC wrote to both the banks.


The issue of bank draft was first raised by Biman Basu, Left Front chairman on April 23. Basu also drew the attention of the EC to such cash transactions, which naturally raised the doubt that these amounts were paid in cash instead of bank accounts as they were unaccounted money.


Definite proof of use and distribution of huge amount of unaccounted money by TMC have been submitted to the Election Commission by the CPI(M).