Parties spent Rs 5,500 cr on poll campaign in UP

Parties spent Rs 5,500 cr on poll campaign in UP

The Uttar Pradesh polls saw a total of over Rs 5,500 crore spent on campaigning by various parties, a survey claimed on Friday.

This included about Rs 1,000 crore towards ‘note for vote’, with nearly one-third voters admitting to cash or liquor offers, it said.

According to the CMS pre-post poll study, upwards of Rs 5,500 crore were spent by major political parties in the just-concluded Assembly election in Uttar Pradesh alone.

The Election Commission allows Rs 25 lakh per candidate for campaign expenditure, but it is a best-known secret that most candidates spend much more than what is officially allowed and what candidates declare after the polls.

Campaign activities include a range of conventional and non-conventional activities. Print and electronic material, including wide screen projections, video vans and the like put together amounted to Rs 600-900 crore this time.

“Every vote cast in Uttar Pradesh involved a cost of about Rs 750, which is highest in the country,” the survey said. In this election, nearly Rs 200 crore in UP and over Rs 100 crore in Punjab were confiscated, the report said, adding that what gets to the electoral campaign pipeline is four-five times more than what gets confiscated by authorities.

The survey further noted that around 55% voters sampled in UP personally knew someone or the other in the neighbourhood who had actually accepted money for voting in this or earlier Assembly elections.

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