Poll candidates, their spouses must disclose source of income, rules SC


New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday ruled that candidates those contesting elections should reveal the sources of their income as well as that of their spouses and children.
A bench headed by justices J Chelameswar and S Abdul Nazeer was hearing a PIL filed by an NGO that fights corruption.
Under the current law, a candidate is required to disclose details of assets and liabilities for self, spouse and three dependents in Form 26 while filing nomination paper but not the source of income.
Lok Prahri, the NGO, sought the amendment of the Representation of the People Act to make it mandatory for those contesting elections to disclose their sources of income as well that of their family.
The Election Commission had in January, 2017 told the Supreme Court that it must be made mandatory for the candidates to disclose their sources of income along with that of their spouse and dependents at the time of filing nomination to bring transparency in the election process.
The poll panel also sought amendment in the Representation of the People Act to make sure that a candidate is disqualified not only when he has an existing contract with the government but also when any member of his family has a similar financial agreement.
In an affidavit before the apex court, the EC said it is necessary for “healthier democracy” that voters get to know the sources of income of aspiring candidates and family members.