TNN | Aug 26, 2012, 

NEW DELHI: Mining group Vedanta Resources paid $5.69 million (about Rs 28 crore) to political parties in India in last three years.

Without disclosing the beneficiaries, billionaire Anil Agarwal-promoted Vedanta in its annual report for 2011-12 stated that it paid $2.01 million to political parties in 2011-12.

This donation was, however, lower than $3.66 million it had paid in 2009-10, when last general elections were held in the country.

A company spokesperson did not reply to the queries. According to its annual reports, Vedanta has paid $8.29 million to the political parties since 2003-04, when it got listed on London Stock Exchange.

However, it did not make a single donation for three years between 2006-07 to 2008-09.

“During the year, the group made political donations in India of $2.01 million either through a trust or directly in respect of the Indian general election. The board believes that supporting the political process in India will encourage and strengthen the democratic process,” it said in its annual report for 2011-12.

However, the mining conglomerate recently came under fire from a UK-based shareholder advisory group Pirc over its practice of making political donations.

Reportedly, Pirc has advised Vedanta shareholders to withhold votes on its report and accounts at the annual general meeting on August 28 and protest against the practice.

Vedanta, which has emerged as a mining and natural resources giant in last one decade, had reported revenues of over $14 billion during the last fiscal.

Its subsidiaries include Sterlite Industries, Sesa Goa, Cairn India and Hindustan Zinc.

In February, the company had announced restructuring of its group structure. As per this, all the group firms will come under the banner of Sesa Sterlite, except Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) in Zambia and Vedanta will continue to be the parent firm of the two firms (Sesa Sterlite and KCM).

The restructuring is likely to be completed by 2012-end.