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Business News/ Politics / News/  ‘Electoral bonds an experiment like EVMs,’ says RSS general secretary Dattatreya Hosabale
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‘Electoral bonds an experiment like EVMs,’ says RSS general secretary Dattatreya Hosabale

Hosabale, 69, who was re-elected as the Sarkaryavah, or General Secretary, on Sunday, March 17, said that, just like in the case of Electoral Bonds, questions were also raised when the Electronic Voting Machines were introduced

Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Sarkaryawah (General Secretary) Dattatreya Hosabale, with Akhil Bhartiya Prachar Pramukh Sunil Ambekar, addresses a press conference on the concluding day of Akhil Bhartiya Pratinidhi Sabha, in Nagpur, on Sunday, March 17, 2024. (PTI Photo) (PTI)Premium
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) Sarkaryawah (General Secretary) Dattatreya Hosabale, with Akhil Bhartiya Prachar Pramukh Sunil Ambekar, addresses a press conference on the concluding day of Akhil Bhartiya Pratinidhi Sabha, in Nagpur, on Sunday, March 17, 2024. (PTI Photo) (PTI)

Dattatreya Hosabale, the re-elected General Secretary of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), has defended Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led Union government over the now-scrapped Electoral Bond scheme, calling it an ‘experiment’.

Hosabale, 69, was re-elected as the Sarkaryavah, or General Secretary, of the RSS after Sangh’s highest decision-making body, Akhil Bharatiya Pratinidhi Sabha (ABPS), met in Nagpur on Sunday.

“We have not thought much about this issue. In the meetings, too, we have not discussed it because electoral bonds are an experiment. Such experiments happen, and the kinds of checks and balances that are required can be done," Hosabale said, addressing a press conference.

Also Read: Electoral bonds data 2nd list: How ‘Lottery King’ Santiago Martin became the biggest donor

The Sarkaryavah, referred to as CEO in modern parlance, is the number two person responsible for the day-to-day functioning of the RSS. Hosabale was first appointed as the Sangh’s Sarkaryavah in March 2021. Prior to that, he was the RSS Sah-Sarkaryavah, or the joint general secretary, since 2009. He will continue as Sarkaryavah until 2027.

Defending the electoral bonds, Hosabale cited the introduction of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) as one such instance, adding that questions were raised about these machines, too, according to a report in The Print.

“It is not that the electoral bonds have suddenly been introduced today. It was brought earlier, too. Whenever a change is introduced, questions are raised. Questions were also raised when the EVMs were introduced. It is natural," he said. Hosabale added, “But time will tell how beneficial and effective the new system was. Hence, the Sangh thinks it should be left for experiment." 

Also Read: Electoral bonds data 2nd list: Mamata Banerjee-led TMC is second largest recipient of donations

The Election Commission of India released the State Bank of India (SBI) -provided data on the electoral bonds on its website in two installments on March 14 and March 17. This move is in compliance with the Supreme Court’s directions to the public sector bank after scrapping the Electoral Bond Scheme in February this year. 

The first set of data pertained to political donations through electoral bonds made between March 9, 2018 and April 11, 2019. The second data uploaded on the election commission’s website on Sunday had details of political donations through electoral bonds between April 2019 and January 2024.

 

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Published: 18 Mar 2024, 07:25 AM IST
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