Poll expense on rise - from Rs.104.5 mn to Rs.13 bnMarch 3rd, 2009 - 6:16 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, March 3 (IANS) Since India’s first Lok Sabha elections in 1952 to the last round in 2004, poll expenses have shot up from Rs.104.5 million to Rs.13 billion. And this time, for the April-May exercise, the figure is likely to be even higher, says official data.
“The provisional expenditure in the last general elections in 2004 was around Rs.1,300 crore (Rs.13 billion) and is expected to increase further in this year’s Lok Sabha elections,” says a reference handbook for the 2009 polls issued by the Press Information Bureau.
The spending dipped only once in 1957 to Rs.59 million but after that has been moving northwards.
“While Rs.7.32 crore (Rs.73.2 million) was incurred in 1962, it gradually rose to Rs.23.03 crore (Rs.230 million) in the sixth general elections in 1977,” the handbook states.
The figures almost doubled to Rs.54.77 crore (Rs.547 million) in 1980 and touched Rs.154.22 crore (Rs.1.54 billion) in the 1989 elections.
It shot up in 1998 to Rs.666.22 crore (Rs.6.66 billion) and then to Rs.880 crore (Rs.8.8 billion) in 1999.