Demanding that Narendra Modi and the BJP should make public their source of funds, Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on Friday said that the state Congress had paid Rs 30 lakh each to its 13 Lok Sabha candidates.
The funds were collected from businessmen, but no undue benefit was given to industrialists, Gogoi told a press conference here.
“Everyone collects money from business houses. Companies give money to us as well. The problem lies there when someone gives huge amount of money and then in return expects some benefit,” he said.
“Big corporate houses are giving huge money to BJP and that is why they are given enormous benefit in Gujarat. Adanis and others are offered land even at a lease of Re 1. BJP and Modi should make public their source of funds,” he said.
“I am observing elections since 1962 and have been contesting since 1971, but never saw such huge inflow of money from corporates. This election is also seeing polarisation on the basis of religion. It is a dangerous trend for Indian democracy, based on secularism and socialism,” Gogoi said.
Asked specifically where the Congress was securing funds for candidates in the state, Gogoi said “Like others, we are collecting funds from different companies in Assam and Kolkata. We are not going to other parts of the country.”
Asked if the Congress would announced the source of funding in the election, Gogoi said it would do so to the Election Commission as per guidelines.
He avoided a direct reply on why Congress and others were against expanding the purview of the RTI Act to political parties.
Gogoi warned that if his Gujarat counterpart became the Prime Minister, India would virtually be ruled by big corporate houses