Narendra Modi’s big poll funding clean-up vision: Will all parties fall in line?

By: |
New Delhi | Updated: January 9, 2017 6:01:04 PM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has once again shown why he is ahead of opposition parties when it comes to setting the agenda for the country.

narendra modi, gandhinagar, gujarat, election funding, poll funding, election funding clean-up, modi election, election modi, arvind kejriwal, bjp meet, bjp national executivePrime Minister Narendra Modi with BJP President Amit Shah and senior party leader LK Advani and Arun Jaitley at the party’s National Executive Meeting in New Delhi on Friday. (PTI Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has once again shown why he is ahead of opposition parties when it comes to setting the agenda for the country. Addressing leaders during recently concluded BJP’s national executive meet, PM Modi said people have a right to know sources of funds coming to the party. Other parties would now be under pressure to declare their sources of funding if BJP takes the first step.

The rising demand for poll-funding clean-up is one of the positive effects of demonetisation decision announced by PM Modi on November 8. The decision rendered all old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes illegal, shocking not only citizens but also opposition parties busy preparing for the upcoming Assembly elections in five states. The opposition parties including Congress, Trinamool Congress (TMC) and Aam Aadmi Party(AAP) accused the PM of having informed BJP members and supporters in advance about demonetisation. They alleged BJP had deposited all its old cash notes into banks before the note ban announcement.

ALSO READ: Demonetisation cannot be a ‘yajna’ unless PM Modi makes this sacrifice

On November 19, PTI quoted Kejriwal as saying, “BJP should disclose a list of all its friends whom it had told about the demonetisation much before the Prime Minister’s announcement and that settled their black money.” Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi also made similar claims on a number of occasions. Calling demonetisation as a “Modi-made disaster”, Rahul alleged on December 17, Modi’s “friends” deposited Rs 6 lakh crore in banks in September 2016.

As the clamour for clarification from the BJP increased, PM Modi asked all party legislators to submit details of their bank transactions during the first 50 days of demonetisation. On December 18, 2017, the Election commission of India urged the government to ban anonymous contribution of Rs 2000 and above to parties by amending The Representation of the People Act, 1951. As per the section 29C of the existing law, parties are required to declare contributions above Rs 20,000. It is believed that parties avoid doing so by receiving huge contributions in multiples of Rs 20,000.

On December 18, 2017, the Election commission of India urged the government to ban anonymous contribution of Rs 2000 and above to parties by amending The Representation of the People Act, 1951. As per the section 29C of the existing law, parties are required to declare contributions above Rs 20,000. It is believed that parties avoid doing so by receiving huge contributions in multiples of Rs 20,000.

ALSO READ – Demonetisation dilemma: Should you trust NaMo or MaMo?

PM Modi raised the issue of election reforms on a number of occasions last year. In an interview to CNN-News 18 on September 2, Modi said the country is trapped in a cycle of elections. “It is time to take it (India) out of this cycle. It is time to stop connecting everything with politics.” However, he noted it can’t be done by a single party. “I hope that someday there will be a debate on this on a national level.” There is no doubt that simultaneous elections will help the country in a number of ways. However, making poll funding transparent at the earliest is the need of the hour as political parties are believed to be the biggest drivers of corruption and black money in the country.

There is no doubt that simultaneous elections will help the country in a number of ways. However, making poll funding transparent at the earliest is the need of the hour as political parties are believed to be the biggest drivers of corruption and black money in the country.

Reports have suggested that Modi government may introduce a bill for poll funding clean-up during the Budget session of Parliament, starting January 31. It is also expected that PM Modi would call an All-Party meet to discuss the issue ahead of the Budget session. Making an attempt to convince all parties to come clean on sources of their funding will not only prove Modi’s sincerity towards the fight against corruption but also shut down the opposition for some time. The question, however, remains if all parties would fall in line, or find some other way to attack Modi and the BJP.

The question, however, remains if all parties would fall in line, or find some other way to attack Modi and the BJP.

Get live Stock Prices from BSE and NSE and latest NAV, portfolio of Mutual Funds, calculate your tax by Income Tax Calculator, know market’s Top Gainers, Top Losers & Best Equity Funds. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

FinancialExpress_1x1_Imp_Desktop