In his New Year's eve 2017 address, PM Narendra Modi took the issue of political funding head on. Political parties cannot be holier-than-thou and need to understand the sentiment and sacrifices of people.
In his New Year’s eve 2017 address, PM Narendra Modi took the issue of political funding head on. Political parties cannot be holier-than-thou and need to understand the sentiment and sacrifices of people. PM Modi said that he wants a constructive debate towards removing corruption in election funding. While he announced no specific measures right now, it seems 2017 will be the year when we will see much more happening on this front.
Addressing the nation on new year 2017 eve, PM Modi thanked the people of the country for the patience that they have shown. PM Modi called the massive demonetisation drive of his government a historic “shuddhi yagana”. Lauding the 125 crore Indians who supported the decision and felt the pain, but were ready to sacrifice, PM Modi said, “After Diwali, after this announcement, we saw that everyone was determined to sacrifice and bear pain to defeat ill forces in the economy.” “Kuch baat hai ki hasti mitati nahi humaari – this is what the countrymen have proven,” PM Modi said.
Prime Minister’s reference to political funding assumes significance in view of the fact that his government faced scathing criticism from Opposition in this regard. The income of the political parties is exempt from Income – tax under Section 13A. The Finance Ministry had however clarified that exemption from Income-tax is given to only register political parties subject to certain conditions, which are mentioned in Section 13A, which includes keeping and maintaining books of accounts and other documents as would enable the Assessing Officer to deduce its income there from.
In respect of each voluntary contribution in excess of Rs. 20000, the political party will have to maintain a record of such contributions along with the name and address of such person who has made such contribution; the accounts of each such political party is to be audited by a Chartered Accountant; and the political party has to submit a report to the Election Commission about the donations received within a timeframe prescribed.
Assuring people of better days ahead, PM Modi said that banks have been urged to focus on dealing with the problems that people are facing. “Banking people have been asked to ease the problems that people are facing, this is particularly for the rural areas, so that villagers and farmers don’t have to bear any more pain,” he said. PM Modi started his address by saying that the youth of India will welcome the New Year with new enthusiasm.