The Election Commission of India (ECI) told the Supreme Court on Monday that it has not endorsed a Centre for Media Studies (CMS) report which had stated that ₹60,000 crores was spent on the 2019 Lok Sabha polls..The ECI made the submission in a counter-affidavit filed by one Prabhakar Deshpande in response to a public interest litigation (PIL) petition seeking directions to curb excessive poll spending by political parties and candidates. .The counter-affidavit said that the petitioner has made an 'incorrect, illogical and flawed' claim that the ECI had acknowledged and validated the CMS report in question, for which a foreword was written by former Chief Election Commissioner SY Quraishi. .The ECI further sought dismissal of the petition on the ground that the prayers made by the petitioner are vague. ."The instant PIL and the prayers made therein are vague and half-baked ... [the plea] is evidently not maintainable and liable to be dismissed at the threshold itself," the counter-affidavit stated..The ECI also emphasised that it is seriously concerned about the larger issue, while detailing various provisions of the Conduct of Election Rules on such aspects."The Election Commission of India has time and again adopted various measures to curb the menace of money power in elections and will continue to do so in future ... Petitioner has not taken into account that such a mechanism [to penalise erring candidates and parties] already exists," the affidavit said..Pertinently, the ECI pointed out that related matters are already sub-judice. On this aspect, the ECI submitted that various aspects concerning how to curb money power menace in polls are already pending before the top court.Further, the ECI added that the poll body is ready to carry out any measure suggested by the top court to tackle the issue..The Supreme Court had sought the response of the ECI in September last year.The plea in question has sought directions to be issued to the ECI to come up with a comprehensive action plan to curb excessive election expenditure with stringent and effective provisions for action against erring candidates and political parties..The petitioner claimed that the poll body has not acted on those spending above the poll limits and that the ECI has remained a paper tiger..In so far as the CMS report is concerned, the petitioner questioned why no action was taken against CMS if the claims made in its report were untrue.."If this [CMS] report is false, why are political parties not taking legal action against Centre for Media Studies, Delhi for defamation. This proves that the report is true," the petitioner stated.