In response to an RTI, SBI declines to provide SOP for the sale and redemption of electoral bonds

The State Bank of India (SBI) has declined a request to disclose its standard operating procedure (SOP) for the sale and redemption of electoral bonds issued to its authorized branches, citing exemption under "commercial confidence," according to a response to a Right to Information (RTI) query.

An activist, Anjali Bhardwaj, had filed an RTI application seeking details of the SOP issued to SBI's authorized branches regarding the sale and redemption of electoral bonds. However, the SBI, in its response, stated that the SOPs are internal guidelines exempted from disclosure under Section 8(1)(d) of the Right to Information Act, which covers information related to commercial confidence, trade secrets, or intellectual property that could harm the competitive position of a third party.

Expressing disappointment over the response, Anjali Bhardwaj argued that disclosure of the SOPs would have shed light on the official instructions governing the handling of information regarding the sale and redemption of electoral bonds.

The SBI's response comes after the Supreme Court criticized the bank for not disclosing unique alphanumeric numbers of the bonds as per its directions. The court had ordered the disclosure of all particulars of the bonds, including the names of the buyers, the amount of money, and the dates of purchase.

The Supreme Court, in a significant verdict on February 15, 2024, scrapped the electoral bonds scheme, calling it unconstitutional and allowing anonymous political funding. The court had ordered disclosure of donors, amounts donated, and beneficiary political parties or entities by March 13.

buttons=(Accept !) days=(20)

Our website uses cookies to enhance your experience. Learn More
Accept !