"Help Us Restore Democracy": Cash-Starved Congress Goes For Crowdfunding

On Wednesday, Congress lawmaker Shashi Tharoor had advised the party to go for public donations to counter the financial might of the BJP

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'Help Us Restore Democracy': Cash-Starved Congress Goes For Crowdfunding

Congress has faced a series of losses in assembly polls after Narendra Modi became Prime Minister


New Delhi: 

Highlights

  1. Shashi Tharoor on Wednesday advised the party to go for public donations
  2. The move is necessary to counter the financial might of the BJP, he said
  3. Strategy appears modelled on the line of AAP seeking online contributions
A day after Congress parliamentarian Shashi Tharoor said his party should not be embarrassed about acknowledging that it was facing a fund crunch, the grand old party has opted for crowdfunding.

"The Congress needs your support and help. Help us restore the democracy which India has proudly embraced since 70 years by making a small contribution," said a tweet by the party along with a link to its crowdfunding campaign.

On Wednesday, Mr Tharoor had tweeted his reaction to a report which said the Congress did not have the financial ability and that could hinder its efforts to regain power from the BJP in the general elections scheduled to be held next year."We should call on all concerned citizens to help us face the moneybags of the BJP," the lawmaker who represents Thiruvananthapuram in the Lok Sabha had said.

Corporate donations for the party have steadily dried up, the news report said. This comes after the Congress had a string of losses in assembly election since the BJP-led government came to power at the centre in 2014. The Congress that ruled 13 of the 29 states then is now down to two states --- Punjab and Mizoram --- apart from being a junior partner in the ruling coalition headed by the JDS in Karnataka.

The Congress made an income of Rs. 225.36 crore during 2016-17, said a recent report by advocacy group Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR). The report compiled from income-tax returns filed by the party said it spent Rs 100 crore more than what it earned in that financial year.

With declared income of over Rs 1,034 crore, BJP is the richest among the seven national political parties in India, the report said.

The latest move by the Congress to seek public donations appears modelled on the lines of the Aam Aadmi Party that seeks contributions online.

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