Mumbai: The Bombay high court has said that there is no statutory authority set up till today that would seek answers from the ruling party why it did not abide by its manifesto made public before the election.
A division bench of Chief Justice Naresh Patil and Justice N.M. Jamdar was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by activist Akshay Bajad, seeking framing of guidelines with respect to the disclosure of information regarding the status of promises made in the election manifesto either by political parties or candidates and the inclusion of these guidelines in the Model Code of Conduct.
Political manifestos had become a guide for voters to know political parties and the policies to be implemented by them, in case such a political party formed the government.
The general public relied heavily on these political manifestos for selecting their candidates, stated the petition.
It was obligatory on the part of these political parties to furnish the details of the gifts and donations received by them, and the said disclosure was to be made to the Income Tax Department and not to the general public.
As such, the general public did not have any right to know as to what was the income of a political party and the source of such revenue, the petition said.
The petitioner’s counsel Satish Talekar showed the court that as per the Constitution, people had a right to know but the court said that the petitioner should go with those parties to seek answers and not come to court.