In a letter to Justice (retd.) MB Shah, Chairman of the SIT on black money, Jagdeep Chhokar, founder-trustee of the ADR, said that SIT's work cannot be completed unless attention is paid to the possible use of unaccounted money in the electoral and political process.

Following the letter, the ADR submitted a memorandum to the SIT calling for a ceiling on election expenditure of political parties, bringing them under the Right to Information Act and disclosure of sources of income of candidates contesting elections.

"The availability of disproportionately large resources of unaccounted money with the political parties during elections might lend itself to misuse by the parties which belies the ideal of free and fair elections in a democratic setup like India. Thus a ceiling should be imposed on election expenditure of political parties," it said.

It also demanded the Chief Information Commissioner's decision bringing political parties under RTI should be complied with in order to instate transparency and accountability.

Referring to the need for financial disclosure for political parties, ADR said, "Curious cases like that of BSP (Bahujan Samaj Party) have been observed where the party has declared total donations of Rs 585.07 crore between 2004-05 and 2012-13 of which Rs 307.31 crore was from voluntary contributions.”

The NGO said  out of the more than 1,600 registered political parties, only 464 contested in the Lok Sabha election held this year "thus raising the question on the need for registering as a political party when not actively taking part in the political process.

The ADR also noted there has been 'an extraordinary growth' in assets declared by the candidates contesting elections as shown in their self-declared affidavits submitted during their nomination for Lok Sabha Elections in 2009 and 2014.

Meanwhile, an international think-tank has ranked India third globally with an estimated USD 94.76 billion (nearly Rs 6 lakh crore) illicit wealth outflows in 2012.

As a result, the cumulative illicit money moving out of the country over a ten-year period from 2003 to 2012 has risen to USD 439.59 billion (Rs 28 lakh crore), as per the latest estimates released by the Global Financial Integrity (GFI).

According to report, Russia is on the top with USD 122.86 billion, followed by China at the second position (USD 249.57 billion) in terms of the quantum of black money moving out of a country for 2012 – the latest year for which these estimates have been made.

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