New Delhi: Political parties will now be able to file their financial accounts online to the Election Commission following the launch of a new web portal (https://iems.eci.gov.in/).
The web portal facilitates the online filing of Contribution Reports, Audited Annual Accounts and Election Expenditure Statements by the Political Parties.
These financial statements are required to be submitted by political parties to the Election Commission as well as Chief Electoral Officers of States and Union Territories, as per the Representation of People’s Act, 1951 and transparency guidelines issued by the Commission.
In a letter addressed to all political parties, ECI said today that the facility has been created with twin objectives: firstly, to facilitate political parties in overcoming the difficulties in the physical filing of reports, and secondly, to ensure the timely filing of financial statements in the prescribed/standardised formats.
The online availability of the data is expected to enhance the level of compliance and transparency, the ECI said. In the letter, the ECI pointed to the pivotal position of political parties and stressed that it is incumbent on them to adhere to the principles of democratic functioning and transparency in electoral processes, particularly in financial disclosures.
The online portal also has a facility for sending reminders in the form of messages on the registered mobile number and registered emails of the authorised representatives of the political party so that the dates of compliance are not missed.
A comprehensive guiding manual with graphical representations and FAQs has also been sent to the political parties explaining the online module and the process of filing reports online. To give further guidance on the online filing, the ECI said it would also organise a hands-on training programme for the designated person(s) from various political parties.
The political parties not wishing to file the financial report through online mode will have to convey the reasons for not filing online to the Commission in writing and may continue to file their reports in hard copy along with CDs/Pen drives in the prescribed formats. The Commission will, in turn, publish all such reports online, along with a letter of justification sent by the party for not filing financial statements online.
– global bihari bureau