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Congress President M Mallikarjun Kharge on Friday demanded a special investigation into the electoral bonds scheme — through which the ruling party has encashed Rs 6,060 crore over five years — and said the BJP’s bank accounts must be frozen till its completion. Kharge also raised the issue of several companies purchasing electoral bonds soon after they faced raids by central agencies such as Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax Department.

While the BJP has collected crores of rupees in electoral bonds, the bank account of the Congress, which received donations, was frozen, he said.

“Prime Minister says ‘Na khaunga, na khane dunga (Will not eat, will not let others eat)’, but today it has been exposed by the Supreme Court how the BJP has made money out of electoral bonds. SBI data shows BJP got 50 per cent donations and Congress got only 11 per cent,” Kharge said.

Speaking to reporters here, he said, “Even our voter pattern (percentage) if you see we are nearly one third and rest of the people are two-third including BJP, but in donations they got more than 50 per cent. How can they get this much money? How can the capitalist or other companies give such donations?”

Speaking about the use of central enforcement agencies by the government, Kharge said, “So there are many dubious donors. Who are they? People who have donated, either they are involved in ED case, Income Tax or raised by these agencies. Ultimately the Government of India, particularly (Narendra) Modi and his party pressured these people to give more donations to their party. Otherwise this much of difference cannot be there.”

Noting that the Congress’s bank accounts were frozen and seized due to which they cannot be operated, Kharge said, “IT (Income-Tax department) was instructed to do this and nearly Rs 300 crore is frozen.” “How can we go to the election? You are collecting crores of rupees through electoral bonds, while Congress got through donations from workers, MPs and other small donors. Our account is closed, their account is open. They got Rs 6,000 crore, while others got very little,” he said.

“If the opposition party’s account is frozen, how will they fight the election,” Kharge further asked. “Where is the level playing ground?” “Therefore I demand an inquiry at the highest level and unless the truth comes out, their (BJP) account should also be frozen. A special investigation should be done to find out whether they got money in return for any favours or through harassment or asking for donations for their cases to be closed,” he said. Those who faced ED and IT raids have gone to the BJP and got (party) posts there, Kharge further alleged, adding, “They have become immediately ‘clean’ in BJP.”

  • Published On Mar 15, 2024 at 05:20 PM IST

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