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Electoral Bond: UP Firm Gives Rs 10 Cr to BJP, Inks J&K Tunnel Deal 2 Days Later

APCO was awarded the Letter of Authorisation (LoA) of the project on 17 December 2019.

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A month after the abrogation of the Article 370 in August 2019, APCO Infratech Private Limited bagged a major tunnel project in Jammu and Kashmir in September 2019. They donated Rs 10 crores to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on 15 January 2020 and two days later, they signed the project officially.

On 17 January, PTI reported: "The pact between the National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL) and APCO Amarnathji Tunnelway was signed in presence of Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari and Minister of State for Road Transport and Highways VK Singh."

However, they were awarded the Letter of Authorisation (LoA) of the project on 17 December 2019.

The Quint was able to access this information after the State Bank of India (SBI) submitted all of the electoral bond data, including the alphanumeric numbers to the Election Commission of India (ECI) on 21 March.

You can read all of our reports on electoral bonds here.

Notably, the company's website also notes that it is "one of the protagonists of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s dream of India becoming a $5 trillion economy."
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But what do we know about its donations? Here's what we found out.

  • On 15 January 2020, they bought bonds worth Rs 10 crore. BJP encashed these on 21 January 2020.

  • On 10 January 2022, they bought bonds worth another Rs 10 crore. BJP encashed these on 17 January 2022.

  • On 12 October 2023, they bought their last tranche of bonds worth Rs 10 crore and BJP encashed these on 19 October 2023.

Hence, in total, the group donated Rs 30 crores to the BJP.

Headquartered in Lucknow, the company's operation office is in Gurugram. They are working in sectors like "Highways, Energy, Tunnel, Irrigation, Urban infrastructure and Industrial development."

In fact, among the on-going tunnel projects mentioned on their website, APCO has also written about the Z-Morh tunnel project in Jammu and Kashmir as well.

APCO was awarded the Letter of Authorisation (LoA) of the project on 17 December 2019.

Tunnel project in Jammu and Kashmir.

(Photo: APCO's website)

As per reports, the Z-Morh Tunnel is designed to provide all-weather road connectivity to parts of Jammu and Kashmir which remain closed during the winters due to heavy snowfall.

Earlier, the project was allotted to Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services (IL&FS), but the contractor had abandoned it after IL&FS Group faced financial crisis.

"National Highways and Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDCL) has awarded the Rs 2,379 crore Z-Morh Tunnel to APCO Amarnathji Tunnelway Pvt Ltd," NHIDCL Managing Director KK Pathak told PTI.

Among its 'milestones' they also mention that in 2015, they were awarded another tunnel Project worth Rs 1,330 crores in Jammu and Kashmir at Z-Morh, an irrigation Project of Gandak and Saryu Main Canal.

More About APCO Group: The company states, "APCO has a net worth of more than 1,451 crore and an annual turnover of Rs. 5,454 crore."

The company's Director Anil Kumar Singh has also been reported as one of the richest businessmen in Uttar Pradesh.

APCO Infratech was incorporated in January 1992.

The company's operating revenues range was over Rs 500 crore for the financial year ending on 31 March 2023, as per Tofler.

Some of their other projects include the Rs 1,500 crore Bundelkhand expressway project in Uttar Pradesh in November 2019, Bengaluru-Chennai expressway project in 2021 and the Rs 9,000 crore Versova-Bandra sea link project in Mumbai in 2022.

Singh reportedly is a director in 17 companies. In total, the company is connected to 19 other companies through its other directors such as Vinod Kumar Singh and Rajesh Pratap Singh.

(The Quint has also reached out to APCO Infratech Private Limited. Their response will be added once received).

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