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Election Commission allows NCP-SP to accept voluntary contributions from public ahead of Maharashtra assembly elections | India News – Times of India



NEW DELHI: The Election Commission on Monday allowed Nationalist Congress Party – Sharadchandra Pawar (NCP-SP) to accept voluntary contributions from the public, conceding a key demand of the party ahead of assembly polls in Maharashtra. The EC order is interim and subject to final outcome of the Supreme Court case relating to last year’s split in NCP.
Sources said NCP-SP, whose eight-member delegation led by party working president Supriya Sule met the poll panel here on Monday, has also asked for its reserved symbol ‘man blowing turha’ to be made more “bold and prominent” claiming that it being a combination of multiple icons — a turbaned man and turha — is not as discernible to the voter’s eye, as, say, a single-icon symbol like ‘hand’ or ‘lotus’.NCP-SP, which put up an impressive show in recent Lok Sabha polls by winning 8 seats in Maharashtra, has also requested the EC not to allot ‘turha’, which features in the list of free symbols, to any other candidate or party.
EC sources told TOI that these requests would be favourably considered.
NCP-SP had written to the poll panel on March 27 and April 4, 2024, requesting it to issue a communication or certificate recording the status of the party for the purpose of accepting voluntary contributions from the public under Section 29B of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
Granting the request, EC on Monday authorised NCP-SP, “on interim basis…to accept any amount of contribution voluntarily offered to it by any person or company other than a government company”. It, however, asked the party to share with EC, before accepting any contribution, details like location of its head office, communication address as well as its local units; names of senior office bearers; numerical strength of its members as well as its elected representatives in Parliament or state legislatures; and a copy of the party’s memorandum of association, all as mandated by Section 29B of R P Act . Any change in these details would also have to be intimated to EC “without delay”, said the poll panel.
NCP-SP would also be required to file a contribution report, in line with Section 29B and 29C of the R P Act, declaring receipts in excess of Rs 20,000 in a financial year. Such report should mention the party’s PAN number.
The EC’s go-ahead for NCP-SP to accept public contributions, coupled with its good show in recent general elections, is expected to give it a major funding boost in the run-up to assembly polls in Maharashtra.
Maharashtra is likely to go to polls, along with Haryana and Jharkhand, in October.
EC had, in its final order dated February 6, 2024, in the NCP symbol dispute, recognised the breakaway NCP faction led by Ajit Pawar as the real NCP and awarded it the reserved poll symbol ‘clock’. It, however, allowed Sharad Pawar group to claim a new name for the imminent Rajya Sabha polls in Maharashtra, and approved its first preference, ‘NCP-SP’.
Later, SC, in an interim order in NCP split case, allowed NCP-SP to continue using the same name and asked it to approach EC for a poll symbol. EC on February 22 allotted NCP-SP the symbol ‘man blowing turha’. On March 23, EC provisionally recognised NCP-SP and reserved its symbol ‘man blowing turha’ for the purpose of general election to the Lok Sabha and four state assemblies.





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