Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee is said to have famously remarked that every legislator starts their career with "a lie on their lips", referring to the gap between what candidates actually spend and what they declare to the Election Commission (EC).

Last fortnight, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)'s General Secretary Gopinath Munde seemed to puncture that deception by declaring at a book launch in Mumbai that he had spent Rs 8 crore during his 2009 Lok Sabha victory. If there is anyone here from the EC, he said, it doesn't matter, because elections are around the corner.

For his candour, Munde has been slapped with a notice from the Election Commission, which can bar him from contesting for three years if found guilty, making the timing of the current polls an entirely irrelevant basis for his bluster. He's also been served notice from the Income Tax (IT) department, which presumably wants to know where he got the Rs 8 crore from. Read More