Shashi Tharoor Gives Congress Some Advice On Twitter. It Is About Money

Last year, the Congress received just one-fourth of the 10.3 billion rupees that the BJP received in 2017, a drop of 14 per cent from the Congress' earnings the previous years.

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Shashi Tharoor Gives Congress Some Advice On Twitter. It Is About Money

Shashi Tharoor says the Congress shouldn't be embarrassed about acknowledging its fund crunch


New Delhi: 

Highlights

  1. A recent analysis indicated donations were drying up for the Congress
  2. Shashi Tharoor said the party needs to think of ways to arrange funds
  3. Crowdsourcing funds can be tried to fight the 2019 elections, he tweeted
Shashi Tharoor has some advice for his party. Mr Tharoor thinks that the cash-strapped Congress shouldn't be red-faced about its state of finances and should try crowdsourcing funds to fight the 2019 elections. That message will reach the party via Twitter where the former international diplomat made his comments, reacting to a media report that the Congress doesn't have the money to match the resources of the BJP and this could undermine its ability to wrest power from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's BJP in next year's Lok Sabha elections.

"I don't think we need to be embarrassed about acknowledging that @incIndia is facing a funding crunch," Mr Tharoor said.

A recent analysis of income declared by political parties indicated how the donations to the Congress were drying up.

Last year, the Congress received just one-fourth of the 10.3 billion rupees that the BJP received in 2017, a drop of 14 per cent from the Congress' earnings the previous years. Much of this contraction in its funds is seen to be linked to the sharp decline in the number of big states where the party is in power, down from 13 in 2013 to just 2 in 2018.

Since businesses were unlikely to open its purse strings for the party, Mr Tharoor said the party should crowdsource funds and call on "all concerned citizens to help us face the moneybags of the BJP".

It isn't an untested idea even for the Congress, which solicits online donations on its website.

The party had experimented with seeking public donations for one candidate in the just-concluded Karnataka elections, a 33-year-old PhD scholar Yogesh Babu who was pitted against B Sriramulu, a key aide of the mining-millionaire Reddy brothers.

The Congress had called the election in this north Karnataka constituency a fight between "clean politics vs dirty politics". It netted Rs 11 lakh in four days.

That is what AAP received in one day before it fought its first election.

The Congress' pitch was largely seen to be inspired by the Aam Aadmi Party campaign in Delhi that spawned out of an anti-corruption movement. It would send volunteers from door to door, seeking donations as little as Rs 10. Each rupee that made its way into the coffers also meant a promise of support.

Arvind Kejriwal's AAP still relies on public donations which it seeks online before a major election. Most of its donors, however, were not from Delhi and received support from abroad as well.


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