The expenditure for 16th Lok Sabha sees a jump of 131 per cent making it the most expensive polls ever
New Delhi, May 13 (PTI): This was the most expensive Lok Sabha elections entailing a cost of Rs 3426 crore to the national exchequer, a substantial jump of 131 per cent over the expenses incurred in 2009.
In the last Lok Sabha polls five years back, the cost to the exchequer was Rs 1483.
The official expenses are part of the whopping Rs 30,000 crore that were projected to be spent by the government, political parties and candidates in the nine-phased polls.
The Election Commission attributed the jump in official expenses to inflation besides a series of measures undertaken to increase voting figures.
Several political parties have jumped into the electoral fray and even the number of independents contesting polls has increased substantially. Expenditure on voter awareness campaigns, distribution of voter slips ahead of election date and use of Voter Verified Paper Audit Trail have contributed in pushing the expenditure further.
According to the Election Commission, the cost of conducting the general elections had already witnessed a 20-fold increase in 2009 as against the first polls held in 1952.
In 1952, the cost was 60 paisa per elector which became Rs 12 in 2009. Considering expenditure in absolute terms, Rs 10.45 crore was spent in 1952, while Rs 1483 crore was the amount government spent for 2009 polls.