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The Electoral Interference

We have been saying for the sake of transparency, we have to make it compulsory for political parties to disclose all their donations, down to the last rupee -Prashant Bhushan
A general election may be defined as a periodic practice wherein members of the legislature are chosen by the citizens of the country. Sometimes, elections are also conducted to fill a vacated position in the legislature.

The political party which gets the highest number of votes gets elected and forms the government in the country for the prescribed period. However, the political party which is in power may be removed by passing a motion which is discussed later in the paper.

A majority government refers to a political party or multiple political parties who join hands to cross the majority mark. In India, a political party is said to gain a majority if it secures 282 seats.

But, at times, there are certain interferences or interferences with the general elections of a particular country. The interference maybe by a foreign government, a foreign company, a foreign agency, etc. The interferences are usually made for the benefit of the country interfering.

There are many instances where a foreign institution had interfered in the elections of the home country, few of which are listed below:
  1. Russian interference in Ukrainian election- 2004
  2. Russian interference in Ukrainian election- 2014
  3. Chinese interference in Taiwanese election- 2018
  4. United States interference in Russian election- 1994
  5. Turkish interference in German election- 2017
Till now, the United States of America has made the highest number of interferences in the elections of other countries amounting to 81, which is followed by Russia(or the Soviet Union) amounting to 36.

In an article published by the Voice of America, it was claimed that China-based hackers were targeting Joe Bidens (USA presidential candidate) campaign. Even during the 2008 presidential election campaign, a group of hackers believed to be supported by the Chinese government was accused of hacking into the campaign teams of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama.

These interferences often lead to outrage in public, the best example of this is the orange revolution which occurred in Ukraine after the interference in the presidential elections of 2004. The main accused in the interference was from the west and Russia.

Before the movement, President Vladimir Putin had made high profile visits to Ukraine, giving the citizens a hint of interference in the electoral process. The election was influenced massively by corruption and voter intimidation.

Subsequently, there was re-election in the country, the 26 December revote was held under maximum scrutiny of local and international observers. The preliminary results, announced by the Central Election Commission on 28 December, gave Yushchenko and Yanukovych 51.99% and 44.20% of the total vote which represented a change in the vote by +5.39% to Yushchenko and ?5.27% from Yanukovych respectively when compared to the November poll.

The aftermath of the orange revolution was that the constitution of Ukraine was amended and the powers were shifted to parliament from the presidency.

It was also held that the Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti (KGB) successor agency of the Soviet Union provided immense support to the opposition invoking power in the opposition to fight against the odds.

The most recent interference in the elections of a country was by China in the Taiwanese elections which were held in 2018.

Quoting an article published by Al-Jazeera where it has been mentioned about the interference of China in the electoral practice of Taiwan:

China is spreading "fake news" via social media to swing Taiwanese voters away from President Tsai Ing-wens party and behind candidates more sympathetic to Beijing ahead of elections, Taiwanese officials said. Beijing is test-driving its techniques in Taiwan, where it has a big stake in the politics and understands the language and culture, but deployed its cyber-capacities in the United States, Australia, and other democracies, the officials said:
However, before the elections, Taiwanese police had arrested few suspects who were spreading fake news in the country.

The foreign interference in the presidential election of the United States of America is said to be the greatest controversy regarding foreign interference.

The Russian government was accused of interference in the US presidential elections of 2016 where the two candidates were Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton. The Russian government had made efforts to improve the candidacy of Donald Trump or to deteriorate the candidacy of Hilary Clinton. As per the intelligence agencies of the United States of America, all these interferences were done directly under the leadership of the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin. The Internet Research Agency settled in Saint Petersburg, created several accounts which focussed on improving the candidacy of Donald Trump or to deteriorate the candidacy of Hilary Clinton.

Such interference by the Russian government had invited fresh economic sanctions on Russia by then-president of the United States of America, Barack Obama.

After the elections, Donald Trump was elected as the President of the United States of America. However, Donald Trump denied any interference and declared it as a hoax call. Donald Trump further alleged the Democrats for the hoax call. Further, Donald Trump dismissed the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation(FBI) James Comey who was a part of the investigating team of interference in the elections.

It was found that Donald Trump had contacts with various Russian officials. Paul Manafort, Michael Flynn, George Papadopoulos, Natalia Veselnitskaya who were a part of Donald Trumps election campaign, also had contacts with several officials of Russia.

In practice, and according to accounts available in the public domain, both Russia and the US have been involved in attempting the manipulation of each others elections to support their favored candidates.

During the Cold War from 1948 to 1988, the interference was institutionalized. The US Communist Party, largely under the control of Moscow and supplied with printed propaganda, was active in US politics until the McCarthy anti-Communist crackdown.

Apart from Russia, other shadowy agencies are suspected to have influenced the British referendum leading to Brexit, including the Cambridge Analytica, a ‘data harvesting company which was also implicated in the 2014 Indian elections which brought the BJP to power, and the 2016 US presidential election on behalf of Trump.

Indian interference in Sri Lankan election

Few are aware of the interference by the Indian foreign intelligence agency in the elections of Sri Lanka in the year 2015. The interference was made with a clear view to defeat the candidate Mahinda Rajapaksa. The interference made by the agency was because of the involvement of China in the military and the economic affairs of Sri Lanka. There are deep racial and cultural links between the two countries. Both share a maritime border as well.

The issue commenced when the president Mahinda Rajapaksa, allowed two Chinese submarines to dock in 2014, without providing any prior information to India. This became a matter of concern for the Indian government that their strategic neighbor, Sri Lanka was improving their ties with another neighbor China. This gave a hint to the Indian government that the Sri Lankan government has started favoring the Chinese government more than Indian.

Wickremasinghe, who was elected as the prime minister of Sri Lanka in 2015 was accused of meeting a man twice or thrice who was later identified as an agent. Reportedly, the meeting was done three or four months before the voting. Wickremasinghe reportedly also met the Indian high commissioner or ambassador.

However, the spokesperson of Wickremasinghe said that the prime minister had discussed the political situation with them. And, denied the fact that anyone had advised him on any political grounds. Mahinda Rajapaksas defeat was termed as an unexpected one after he completed two terms as the president of Sri Lanka.

A close associate of the Rajapaksa family said:
There are certain things you dont talk about but added that:
there were clear signs of a deep campaign by foreign elements. Sri Lankas then defense secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa - a brother of the former president had expressed sorrow to the Indian National Security Advisor(NSA), Ajit Doval about the practices of the agent.

Quoting a report published in the newspaper of Sri Lanka links with the common opposition" had cost Indias Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) station chief his job in Colombo.

The statement provides further clarity about the involvement of India in the affairs of Sri Lanka.

Further, it was alleged that a RAW agent helped coordination of talks within the opposition, and convincing former PM Ranil Wickremasinghe not to stand against Rajapaksa, but to choose a common opposition candidate, who had better chances of winning. The agent is also alleged to have been in touch with Chandrika Kumaratunga, who played a key role in convincing Maithripala Sirisena to be the common candidate.

A media report from Colombo, days after Mahinda Rajapaksas defeat in the elections of 2015 claimed that an intelligence office from India was instrumental in uniting rival political parties against Mahinda Rajapaksa, and such attempt turned out to be successful as Mahinda Rajapaksa was defeated by Maithripala Sirisena by a bare margin of 3.8%.

In the year 2018, Maithiripala Sirisena had alleged an India intelligence agency to plot his assassination, however, he didnt name any agency in particular. Such a remark was made by Maithiripala Sirisena in a cabinet meeting after Sri Lankan police CID had arrested an Indian national.

The interference by the Soviet Union

The book Mitrokhin Archive which is said to be the most complete document by the FBI, claims that under Joseph Stalin (Former premier of the Soviet Union), India had been regarded as the imperialist puppet. The KGB had started its operations in India post-1917 and had expanded the operations between the 1950s and 1960s.

In 1958, V. K. Krishna Menon who was said to be a plain friend of the Soviet Union was elected as the defense minister of India and soon after being selected the arms import of India had shifted to the Soviet Union from the West. The career of V.K. Krishna Menon was spent in foreign before he became the defense minister of India.

Under his leadership, India was badly defeated by China on the border. Subsequently, he failed to be renominated by the congress party in his existing constituency of Bombay for the elections of 1967.

This led him to contest in the elections independently for two years. However, after two years with the support of the communist party, he was elected as an independent from West Bengal. But, the fact of the matter was the issues on which V.K Krishna Menon did his election campaign. The choice of topics suggested that he had been influenced by the KGB, some of the topics were-- demand that American troops in Vietnam be tried for genocide and his claim that they were slitting open the wombs of pregnant women to expose their unborn babies.

The Soviet Unions strategy for the Indian elections during 1966 was to encourage the Communist Party of India(CPI) and the Communist Party of India (Marxist)(CPM) to form a left-wing coalition that would focus on opposing Indira Gandhi. The Soviet Union had also been subsidizing the CPI and some other left-wing parties for the election campaign of 1967. The KGB also funded several agents and confidential contacts with the Congress party.

After the elections of 1967, the KGB doubtlessly and confidently claimed that it was able to influence at least 30% to 40% of the newly formed parliament. The congress lost 21 of its seats to other parties.

By the early 1970s, the presence of KGB in India became the largest in the world outside the Soviet bloc. Indira Gandhi didnt place any limit on the number of Soviet diplomats and trade officials, thus allowing both KGB and GRU(Main directorate of general staff of the Russian Federation) to place as many cover positions they wished for and thus widening their scope of interference in the country.

Oleg Kalugin (former KGB general) recalls one occasion in which Yuri Andropov (Former General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union) personally turned down an offer from an Indian minister to provide information in return of $50,000(equivalent to $21,28,819 in 2020) on the grounds that:
The KGB was already supplied with material from the Indian foreign and defense ministries
It seemed like the entire country was for sale; the KGB and the CIA- had deeply penetrated the Indian government.

Suitcases full of banknotes are said to be taken to the house of the prime minister that too regularly. The suitcases were reportedly sent by the Soviet Union. On at least one occasion a secret gift of 2 million rupees from the politburo to the congress was personally delivered to a newspaper that was said to be a supporter of the prime minister. This was done to spread ‘positive information about the prime minister and the Congress party.

The KGB funneled 10.6 million roubles (roughly 10 million pounds, according to old exchange rates) (134,634,598 pounds of 2020) into Indira Gandhis India, mainly through her pudgy, double-chinned party fund-raiser Lalit Narayan Mishra who accepted "suitcases" of money for Congress without thinking to inform the prime minister.

An import-export business started by the communist party of India in the 1960s with the Soviet Union had contributed more than 10 million rupees in the party funds. 10 million rupees were reportedly generated within a decade and such funds were said to be used for election campaigns. Other secret subsidies, which amounted to 1.5 million rupees had gone to the state communist parties, individuals, and media. The funds distributed to parties, individuals, and media were associated with the Communist Party of India. Still, the funds which were sent from Moscow to the party headquarters via the KGB were larger. In the initial six months of 1975, the funds amounted to over 2.5 million rupees.

According to KGB files, by 1973 it had ten Indian newspapers on its payroll (which cannot be identified for legal reasons) as well as a press agency under its ‘control. During 1972 the KGB claimed to have planted 3,789 articles in Indian newspapers - probably more than in any other country in the non-Communist world. According to its files, the number fell to 2,760 in 1973 but rose to 4,486 in 1974 and 5,510 in 1975.66 In some major NATO countries, despite active-measures campaigns, the KGB was able to plant little more than 1 percent of the articles which were placed in the Indian press. This portrays the amount of interference of the Soviet Union in India during the 1960s and 1970s as compared to other countries as well. The articles planted mainly focussed on publishing positives about the congress party.

The KGB was also confident of its ability to organize mass demonstrations in Delhi and other major cities. In 1969, for example, Andropov informed the Politburo, The KGB residency in India has the opportunity to organize a protest demonstration of up to 20,000 Muslims in front of the US embassy in India. The cost of the demonstration would be 5,000 rupees and would be covered in the . . . budget for special tasks in India. I request consideration.

Brezhnev wrote

Agreed
on Andropovs request. The KGB had formed such a strong position in India that they had the potential to organize an event of mass destruction anywhere in the country.

In April 1971, two months after Mrs. Gandhis landslide election victory, the Politburo approved the establishment of a secret fund of 2.5 million convertible rubles (codenamed DEPO) to fund active-measures operations in India over the next four years. During that period KGB reports from New Delhi claimed, on slender evidence, to have assisted the success of Congress (R) in elections to state assemblies.

A state of emergency was imposed by Mrs. Indira Gandhi in 1975 which was then lifted in 1977. In the state of emergency, press censorship was established, as many as, 1,10,000 people were arrested without any trial. Opposition leaders were detained overnight.

The major reason behind declaring a state of emergency was the Raj Narain verdict.
In the 1971 elections, Raj Narain had a face-off with Mrs. Gandhi in the elections and was defeated by her. Mr. Narain filed a case for election fraud and the use of state machinery against Mrs. Indira Gandhi. The first instance of an Indian prime minister being cross-examined was in this case. On June 12, 1975, Justice Jagmohan Lal Sinha found Mrs. Indira Gandhi guilty on charges and declared the election as null and void and removed her from her seat of Lok Sabha.

The court further imposed a ban on Mrs. Indira Gandhi from contesting in elections for six years. Mrs. Indira Gandhi was left with no choice but to challenge the decision of the High Court in the Supreme Court. Justice V.R. Krishna Iyer Upheld the decision of the high court and ordered that all the privileges given to Mrs. Indira Gandhi must be immediately withdrawn and to debar her from voting. The following day Janata Party had organized a rally in Delhi where a statement was made which is mentioned below:

A police officer must reject the orders of government if the order is immoral and unethical as this was Mahatma Gandhis motto during the freedom struggle.

Such a statement was taken as a sign of invoking rebellion in the country. Later that day, Mrs. Indira Gandhi requested the president of India, Mr. Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed to proclaim a state of emergency under article 352 of the Indian constitution (Article 352 states that the President can proclaim Emergency if he/she believes that a grave emergency exists whereby the security of India or any part of the territory thereof is threatened, whether by war or external aggression or armed rebellion).

Within three hours, the electricity to all major newspapers was cut and the opposition political leaders were arrested. The proposal was sent without discussion with the Union Cabinet, who only learned of it and ratified it the next morning.

On 18 January 1977, Mrs. Gandhi announced that elections would be held in March. Mrs. Gandhi was overconfident about the outcome of the election. To ensure success it mounted a major operation, codenamed KASKAD, involving over 120 meetings with agents during the election campaign. Nine of the Congress (R) candidates at the elections were KGB agents. Files noted by Mitrokhin also identify by name twenty-one of the non-Communist politicians (four of them ministers) whose election campaigns were subsidized by the KGB.

In the election year of 1977, the prolonged shocker came to the Congress party where it was defeated by the Janata party alliance resulting in loss of control for the in the history of independent India.

Articles planted by the KGB in the Indian press declined sharply from 1,980 in 1976 to 411 in 1977.

Then, in 1980, the Congress party won 351 seats out of 542 and Mrs. Indira Gandhi was elected as the prime minister again.

In the year 1981, there were certain verbal attacks by various members of the Communist Party of India on Mrs. Indira Gandhi. According to KGB reports, some of the CPI attacks were personal. Indian Communist leaders spread rumors that Mrs. Gandhi was taking bribes both from state ministers and from the French suppliers of the Mirage fighters which she decided to purchase for the Indian air force.

In the spring of 1982, the New Delhi residency reported that Agent ‘S had direct access to Mrs. Gandhi and had personally presented to her forged ISI document fabricated by Service A, which purported to demonstrate Pakistani involvement in the Khalistan conspiracy.

In June 1983 she sent a secret letter to the Soviet leader, Yuri Andropov, attacking the CPI for having ‘ganged up against her with right-wing reactionaries. The letter was entrusted to Yogendra Sharma, a member of the Party Politburo who disagreed with Rajeshwar Raos opposition to Mrs. Gandhi. Once in Moscow, however, Sharma had second thoughts and ‘confessed all to a Party comrade. When the story was made public in India, Indiras critics accused her of ‘inviting Soviet interference in Indias internal affairs. Mrs. Gandhi refused to comment.


American involvement in past Indian elections has been significant but has very rarely been exposed. The most recent case was US author Thomas, Powers bombshell that the CIA controlled an Indian agent in Mrs. Gandhis cabinet in 1971. In his book, The Man Who Kept The Secrets, Powers, a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist, states that the CIA was being fed vital information during a crucial stage in the 1971 Indo-Pakistan war by a member of Mrs. Gandhis cabinet.

However, the Congress party had denied all the claims that were made and termed the claims as "pure sensationalism and vague allegations," that the Soviet secret service KGB had bribed its politicians including ministers in Indira Gandhis government. The Congress party also gave no relevance to these papers.

While the Russians have tried to downplay Mitrokhins importance, Baroness Jay, then Leader of the House of Lords, told the upper chamber on June 13, 2000:
Mr. Mitrokhins information is uniquely valuable. Its authenticity has been proved beyond doubt.

A ban on foreign company donations was made in the year 2015 for the elections, following which, political parties became more dependent on finance from clandestine sources. It was estimated that a party having 500 candidates would be having an electoral bill of over Rs. 25 crores(around Rs. 25 lakh per candidate). The conclusion is that the demand for foreign assistance increased dramatically.

The elections of 2015, probably for the first time, was subjected to a massive injection of funds from Islamic countries. Libya being the major donor. Though, the support was extended only to Muslim parties like the Muslim league.

An electoral bond is like a promissory note that has its specified face value that can be used by individuals, organizations, and institutions to donate money to political parties without revealing the identity of the donor. Before the budget of 2017, it was a rule that a political party doesnt need to reveal the source of donation that they have received if the donation is of less than Rs. 20,000.

However, the rule was widely misused by the parties by saying that they received 90% of their donations in the denomination of fewer than Rs. 20,000 which increased the amount of black money in the economy. Therefore, after recommendation by the election commission, the government reduced the limit of an anonymous donation to Rs. 2,000 in the budget of 2017.
Surprisingly, electoral bonds are issued to ensure transparency in the political funding but the reality was different. As per data of Election Commission of India; the ruling BJP raised Rs 2,410 crore before the Lok Sabha elections 2019 which includes around 60% or Rs 1,450 crore through Electoral Bonds.

According to ADR, for the electoral bond tranche that was issued in March 2018, parties received ?222 crores through electoral bonds. Of this, the BJP received almost 95% of the proceeds, standing at almost 210 crores.

In 2014, when the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act was not amended, the BJP and Congress party had allegedly accepted donations from Vedanta Resources, registered in England and Wales. However, it was indirect, since it owned controlling stakes in Sterlite Inc. and Sesa Goa, under whose name contributions were made.

The BJP alone accounted for close to 93% and the BJP and Congress together account for approximately 98% of all declared donations of national political parties, according to information compiled by the Association Of Democratic Reforms (ADR) based on party declarations to the Election Commission of India. The party who introduced this received the highest donations.

In 2014, under the case, Association for Democratic Reforms & ANR. v. Union of India & ORS, the high court of Delhi held that the Congress party and the BJP party, violated the ban on foreign contributions under the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, by accepting cash from two local companies owned by a company, Vedanta based in London between 2004 and 2012.
By the definition of the 1976 act, the Delhi High Court ruled that:
multiple donations from the London-based natural resources giant Vedanta (among a few others) provided to both parties ran afoul of the law on the books.

Since more than one-half of their share capital was held by a foreign company

the donations in favor of the political parties are to be construed as emanating from a Foreign Source and fall within the prohibition imposed by the Act.

Laws related to electoral interference in India:

  1. Section 29(B) of the People Representation Act, 1951-

    As per this section, every political party may accept any contribution made voluntarily by any person or any company other than a government company. It also mentions that no political party shall be eligible to accept any contribution from any foreign source.

  2. Section(1)(G) of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010-

    As per this section, a foreign company means any company or association or body of individuals incorporated outside India and includes- a foreign company within the meaning of Section 379 of the Companies Act, 2013, a company which is a subsidiary of a foreign company, a multi-national corporation.

  3. Section(1)(H) of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010-

    As per this section, a foreign contribution "means the donation, delivery or transfer made by any foreign source ? of any article, not being an article given to a person as a gift for his personal use, if the market value, in India, of such article, on the date of such gift is not more than such sum as may be specified from time to time by the Central Government by the rules made by it in this behalf, of any currency, whether Indian or foreign, of any security such as shares, scrips, stocks, bonds, debentures, debenture stock or other marketable securities of a like nature in or of any incorporated company or other body corporate.

  4. Section 2(1)(J) of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010-

    As per this section, a foreign source includes the Government of any foreign country or territory and any agency of such Government, any international agency, not being the United Nations or any of its specialized agencies, the World Bank, International Monetary Fund or such other agency as the Central Government may, by notification, specify in this behalf, a foreign company, a corporation, not being a foreign company, incorporated in a foreign country or territory, a multi-national corporation, a company within the meaning of the Companies Act, 1956 a trade union in any foreign country or territory, whether or not registered in such foreign country or territory, a foreign trust or a foreign foundation, by whatever name called, or such trust or foundation mainly financed by a foreign country or territory, a society, club or other association of individuals formed or registered outside India, a citizen of a foreign country.

  5. Section 3(1)(A) of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010-

    This section prohibits an election candidate from accepting any amount of contribution from any foreign source.

The finance bill of 2018 which was passed by the parliament amends the finance act of 2016 and brought retrospective amendments to it, changing the foreign contribution tolerance limit to 1976 from 2010. This means that initially, all foreign donations received before September 26, 2010, could be put under scrutiny. This amendment by the Finance Bill pushes this date back to August 5, 1976, effectively giving this bill a retrospective effect by almost 35 years.

The finance bill also amended section 2 of Foreign Contribution Regulation, Act, the amendment state that companies in which foreign entities who have businesses in India and whose holdings in them do not exceed half the companys own capital at the time of making this contribution (i.e. who do not hold an ownership stake) shall not be classified as a foreign company. Such a retrospective amendment helped the Congress party and the BJP to escape from the 2014 Delhi High Court judgment.

The BJP government, through the Finance Act, 2016, had also changed the definition of a foreign company by saying a firm with less than 50% of share capital held by a foreign entity would no longer be a foreign source anymore.

However, the major concern about these amendments was that no debate regarding the amendments was made in the parliament.

Conclusion
India is the largest democracy in the world and the main feature of a democratic government is transparency in its work. Democracy ensures that the work done was within the rules and regulations.

In India, there has been a history of malpractices during the elections. Malpractices in the form of foreign interference, funding to political parties, defection, EVM hacking, etc.
The major reasons for electoral interferences are Hacking our political system, Purchasing of digital advertisements, pumping money in political parties, foreign news agencies setting up in India, etc.

As per the current law in India, any foreign company can donate any amount of money to their preferred political party through their subsidies. This can be done through electoral bonds and electoral bonds would help in maintaining anonymity.

Yaqoob Quereshi commented on the new amendment saying that the new amendment would make Indian politics and Indian elections vulnerable to foreign elections. Quereshi also mentioned that no one makes a free donation, everyone requires something in return.

I would strongly suggest or recommend the following:
  1. Laws must be formulated to scrap any foreign donations to political parties/candidates.
  2. Transparency must be improved by widening the scope of current laws.
  3. The amendment made in 2014 with respect Foreign Contributions Regulation Act, must be restored, which would prevent foreign companies to contribute through their subsidies.
  4. Technological improvement must be taken care of, which would ensure minimum hacking into our electoral system.
  5. Technological improvements must also be made about online advertisements.
  6. Stringent laws must be made so that even the tiniest contribution comes under the radar.
  7. Courts must be established that would consider the matters related to elections only.
Since elections are an event that does not occur regularly, therefore, transparency must be at its peak. There should be no influence of any foreign source on the political parties/candidates.

No country with any self-respect would want its political parties to be controlled by foreign money.- Jagdeep Chokkar (Founder of ADR)

References:
  1. Orange revolution. (2004, November 25). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orange_Revolution#Re-run_election
  2. Fake news rattles Taiwan ahead of elections. (2018, November 23). Retrieved from https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/11/news-rattles-taiwan-elections-181123005140173.html
  3. Tribune News Service. (2019, November 16). Meddling in foreign affairs. Retrieved from https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/archive/comment/meddling-in-foreign-affairs-861400
  4. Indian spys role alleged in Sri Lankan presidents election defeat. (2015, January 18). Retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sri-lanka-election-india-insight/indian-spys-role-alleged-in-sri-lankan-presidents-election-defeat-idUSKBN0KR03020150118
  5. [Burning issue] presidential elections in Sri Lanka and India- Sri Lanka relations in recent times. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.civilsdaily.com/burning-issue-presidential-elections-in-sri-lanka-and-india-sri-lanka-relations-in-recent-times/
  6. The emergency (India). (2005, March 28). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Emergency_(India)
  7. What is an electoral bond? 12 interesting facts about it. (2020, February 6). Retrieved from https://www.jagranjosh.com/general-knowledge/what-is-electoral-bond-know-12-interesting-facts-about-it-1515483221-1
  8. Kudrati, M. (2019, March 26). Foreign funding for political parties: All you need to know. Retrieved from https://www.boomlive.in/foreign-funding-for-political-parties-all-you-need-too-know/
  9. PTI. (2018, March 18). Lok Sabha passes bill to exempt political parties from scrutiny on foreign funds, without debate. Retrieved from https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/lok-sabha-passes-bill-to-exempt-political-parties-from-scrutiny-on-foreign-funds-without-debate/article23285764.ece
  10. Andrew, C. (2014). The Mitrokhin Archive II: The KGB in the world. Penguin UK.
  11. Saberin, Z. (2018, April 11). India parties now can get foreign funding, activists say not OK. Retrieved from https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/india-parties-foreign-funding-activists-180410122808220.html
  12. The Law Library of Congress, Global Legal Research Directorate(August 2019). Regulation of Foreign Involvement in Elections[PDF File] Retrieved from https://www.loc.gov/law/help/elections/foreign-involvement/foreign-involvement-in-elections.pdf
Written By: Rehan Bhasin

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