Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party to HC: Didn't flout law, got funds from Indians only

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Aam Aadmi Party has told the Delhi HC that it got donations worth Rs 30 cr from Indian citizens, out which about Rs 8.5 cr came from NRIs. Reuters Aam Aadmi Party has told the Delhi HC that it got donations worth Rs 30 cr from Indian citizens, out which about Rs 8.5 cr came from NRIs. Reuters
SummaryAam Aadmi Party has told the Delhi High Court that it got donations worth Rs 30 crore from Indian citizens.

Rejecting the allegation of illegally receiving foreign funds, Aam Aadmi Party has told the Delhi High Court that it got donations worth Rs 30 crore from Indian citizens only, out which about Rs 8.5 crore came from NRIs.

Denying having violated any foreign exchange or other laws, AAP contended that the PIL accusing it and its founding members of having illegally received foreign funding is "scandalous, frivolous, motivated and baseless".

The party, in its response filed in the high court, has said that it has "very small amount of funds and also the most transparent method of political funding amongst all parties".

"It is the only party whose all financial records, and the names of each and every donor is on its website, open for public view," the affidavit, filed by AAP national secretary Pankaj Kumar Gupta, said and sought dismissal of the PIL.

AAP, while rejecting the contentions in the petition for lodging of a criminal case against it and its members, said that the high court "must direct a thorough investigation of the funding sources (including foreign funding) of major political parties, particularly the Congress and the BJP".

"These are the parties that have received donations officially running into thousands of crores from unknown sources. Other hidden donations that are not shown in their books may be much higher and deserve a thorough investigation in order to clean up our political and electoral system," the party has said in its response.

It has also alleged that while the Home Ministry "readily launched an investigation into AAP's finances on the pretext of pendency of the petition", no such probe or action was taken against major political parties, "despite clear cut evidence of taking foreign funding by them".

In its affidavit filed in the high court, the party has said, "As far as AAP is concerned, it takes donations online through its website, through cheques/drafts, or by cash. The website of AAP clearly states that as per Indian law, only people with Indian citizenship can donate to a political party. All those donating to AAP have to state they are Indian citizens and giving money out of their own earnings.

"For all donors who are not resident in India, they must give their valid Indian passport numbers before they can make a donation. All bank drafts without proper identification of donors are returned. Each donor is given a receipt of donation."

"The party has received about Rs 30.50

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