There will be no stay on the purchase of electoral bonds as the Supreme Court on Friday, 12 April, directed all political parties to furnish receipts of electoral bonds and details of identity of donors in a sealer cover to the Election Commission.In an interim order, the apex court also directed all political parties to provide details of the amount and bank account of donors by 30 May to the poll panel.The order was pronounced by a bench comprising of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna.The order was passed on a plea of an NGO which challenged the validity of the scheme and sought that either the issuance of electoral bonds be stayed or names of donors be made public to ensure transparency in the poll process.Here’s Why Electoral Bonds Are Dangerous to DemocracyNot a Victory But a Respite For Indian VoterTalking to Bloomberg Quint, Prashant Bhushan senior lawyer and petitioner in the case, said the SC’s order is a step forward but cannot be termed a through and through victory for the petitioners as there are two aspects that still need introspection.“Political parties can still claim that they do not know the source of the donation as the name of the donor is not written on the electoral bonds. The second problem is that even if the names are disclosed, they are submitted to EC in a sealed cover,” Bhushan said.“It is important for the country to know, for the people to know and it is in the interest of transparency, it is a voter’s right to know who are the people giving money (to political parties).”Prashant Bhushan, Lawyer“The suspicion is that much of this anonymous money through electoral bonds is being given by companies who have received favours from the government by the way of kickbacks and bribes. More than 95 percent of the bonds have gone to the ruling party,” Bhushan said.“Now through electoral bonds, a method of giving bribes to political parties through banking channels has opened up,” he said, adding that it makes easier to give siphoned money to the parties.Jagdeep Chhokar, founder member of ADR said, that black money continues to play a significant role in the elections.The Problem With the Supreme Court Order on Electoral BondsDebunking the Black Money Myth“We are in the midst of an election right now and electoral bonds have been around for two years now. The EC puts out a statement about cash getting seized in the country every other day. Even if that cash continues to be in circulation during the electoral process, some of it is seized and bulk of it escapes the seizure. Black money continues to play a significant role in the elections,” Chhokar told Bloomberg Quint.“To say that electoral bonds, will remove black money is not tenable,” Chhokar said.The government had notified the Electoral Bond Scheme 2018 on 2 January, 2018.What are Electoral Bonds?As per provisions of the scheme, electoral bonds may be purchased by a person, who is a citizen of India or incorporated or established in India.A person being an individual can buy electoral bonds, either singly or jointly with other individuals.Only political parties registered under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 and which secured not less than one per cent of votes polled in the last general election to the House of the People or the Legislative Assembly of the State, shall be eligible to receive electoral bonds.Electoral bonds shall be encashed by an eligible political party only through a bank account with authorized bank.Electoral Bonds: No Stay by SC, Parties to Reveal Donations to EC We'll get through this! Meanwhile, here's all you need to know about the Coronavirus outbreak to keep yourself safe, informed, and updated. The Quint is now available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, Click here to join.