17CA. Functions of electoral trusts
(1) The functions of an electoral trust referred to in section 13B shall be as provided in this rule.
(2) The electoral trust may receive voluntary contributions from –
(a) an individual who is a citizen of India;
(b) a company which is registered in India; and
(c) a firm or Hindu undivided family or an Association of persons or a body of individuals, resident in India.
(3) A receipt indicating the following shall be issued by the trust immediately on receipt of any contribution indicating the following:-
(a) name and address of the contributor;
(b) Permanent account number of the contributor or passport number in the case of a citizen who is not a resident;
(c) amount and mode of contribution including name and branch of the Bank and date of receipt of such contribution;
(d) name of the electoral trust;
(e) Permanent account number of the electoral trust;
(f) date and number of approval by the prescribed authority; and
(g) Name and designation of the person issuing the receipt.
(4) The electoral trust shall not accept contributions-
(a) from an individual who is not a citizen of India or from any foreign entity whether incorporated or not;
(b) from any other electoral trust which has been registered as a company under section 25 of the Companies Act, 1956 (1 of 1956) and approved as an electoral trust under the Electoral Trusts Scheme, 2013.
(c) from a Government company as defined in clause (45) of section 2 of the Companies Act, 2013 (18 of 2013); and
(d) from a foreign source as defined in clause (j) of section 2 of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010 (42 of 2010).
(5) The electoral trust shall accept contributions only by way of an account payee cheque drawn on a bank or account payee bank draft or by electronic transfer to its bank account and shall not accept any contribution in cash.
(6) The electoral trust shall not accept any contribution without the permanent account number of the contributor, who is a resident and the passport number in the case of a citizen of India, who is not a resident.
(7) A political party registered under section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 (43 of 1951) shall be an eligible political party and an electoral trust shall distribute funds only to the eligible political parties.
(8) (i) The electoral trust may, for the purposes of managing its affairs, spend up to five per cent, of the total contributions received in a year subject to an aggregate limit of rupees five hundred thousand in the first year of incorporation and rupees three hundred thousand in subsequent years;
(ii) the total contributions received in any financial year along with the surplus from any earlier financial year, if any, as reduced by the amount spent on managing its affairs, shall be the distributable contributions for the financial year;
(iii) an electoral trust shall be required to distribute the distributable contributions received in a financial year, referred to in item (ii), to the eligible political parties before the 31st day of March of the said financial year, subject to the condition that at least ninety five per cent, of the total contributions received during the financial year along with the surplus brought forward from earlier financial year, if any, are distributed.
(9) The trust shall obtain a receipt from the eligible political party indicating the name of the political party, its permanent account number, registration number, amount of fund received from the trust, date of the receipt and name and designation of person signing such receipt.
(10) The electoral trust shall not utilize any contributions for the direct or indirect benefit of the members or contributors, or for any of the following persons, namely:-
(a) the members (including members of its Executive Committee, Governing Committee or Board of Directors) of the electoral trust;
(b) any relative of such Members;
(c) where such member or contributor is a Hindu undivided family, a member of that Hindu undivided family;
(d) any person who has made a contribution to the trust;
(e) any person referred in sub-section (3) of section 13 of the Act; and
(f) any concern in which any of the persons referred to in clauses (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e) has a substantial interest.
(11) (i) An electoral trust shall keep and maintain such books of account and other documents in respect of its receipts, distributions and expenditure as may enable the computation of its total income in accordance with the provisions of the Act;
(ii) The electoral trust shall also maintain a list of persons from whom contributions have been received and to whom the same have been distributed, containing the name, address and permanent account number of each such person along with the details of the amount and mode of its payment including the name and branch of the bank.
(12) Every electoral trust shall get its accounts audited by an accountant as defined in the Explanation below sub-section (2) of section 288 and furnish the audit report in Form No. 10BC along with particulars forming part of its Annexure, to the Commissioner of Income-tax or the Director of Income-tax, as the case may be, having jurisdiction over the electoral trust, on or before the due date specified for furnishing the return of income by a company under section 139.
(13) An electoral trust shall maintain a regular record of proceedings of all meetings and decisions taken therein.
(14) Every electoral trust shall furnish a certified copy of list of contributors and a list of political parties, to whom sums were distributed in the manner prescribed in sub-rule (8), to the Commissioner of Income-tax or the Director of Income-tax, as the case may be, every year along with the audit report as stipulated under sub- rule (12).
(15) Any change in the shareholders, subsequent to the approval granted under the Electoral Trusts Scheme, 2013 shall be intimated to the Board within thirty days of such change.”