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Congress lacks funds to run a high-voltage campaign: AICC Secretary 

Dutt accused AAP chief Kejriwal of using public money to fund his campaign, and added that none of the mayors that the BJP has had in its 15-year-rule in the city are visible in the campaign.

November 24, 2022 / 05:32 PM IST
AICC Secretary Abhishek Dutt (Pic: inc.in)

AICC Secretary Abhishek Dutt (Pic: inc.in)

Congress, which is perceived to have hit the campaign trail late for the assembly elections in Gujarat and the civic-body polls in Delhi, apparently lacks the funds for a high-voltage campaign, All-India Congress Committee (AICC) Secretary Abhishek Dutt has said.

Dutt, who is also the Congress in-charge for Karnataka, spoke of a plethora of issues ― from the delayed Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) elections, to the assembly elections due next year in Karnataka.

In a conversation with Moneycontrol, Dutt said, “King size hoardings and advertisements help build a party’s profile, but we don’t have enough money.

Larger than life advertisements

"Delhi Chief Minister and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal is using public money for his campaign. Under his leadership, there is corruption in the electricity, health, and education departments. Kejriwal has abandoned his stated position of being an aam aadmi (common man)," said Dutt.

According to Election Commission of India (ECI), in 2020-2021, the BJP received over Rs 477.54 crore in donations, whereas the opposition Congress received Rs 74.50 crore. Both these parties have not submitted the contribution reports of the year 2021-2022.

However, AAP declared donations worth Rs 38.24 crore, received in 2021-22 and donations worth Rs 11.33 crore received in 2020-21.

The Bharatiya Janata Party raised Rs 22 crore through electoral bonds in 2020-21, as per the 2020-21 annual audited report of the party submitted to the Election Commission of India.

MCD polls

The Congress is aggressively working on exposing the false narratives of the BJP and the AAP. The MCD has been ruled by the BJP for over 15 years, and the city has three garbage mountains to show for it. The party has failed to provide basic amenities to the people. On the other hand, AAP did not take preventive measures to curb air pollution, improve last-mile connectivity, nor provide tap water to every household.

"The people of Delhi were promised a clean Yamuna, but nothing has been done by the ruling government. AAP is in power in Punjab also. Did they even attempt to curb stubble burning? Arvind Kejriwal and his ministers are making money to lead a life of luxury, they are least interested in the aam aadmi," said Dutt.

The promise of AAP

AAP has become a party of affluent people, using gimmicks to stay relevant.  The party which wanted to bring the Lokpal now sells (election) tickets to people. The party is not gaining relevance — it’s shifting goal posts after miserably failing to deliver.

"As a party, we are trying to generate awareness among the people by going door-to-door. The developmental projects in Delhi which are being inaugurated by the AAP and the BJP were started by former Chief Minister Sheila Dixit," explained Dutt.

National leaders campaigning for municipal polls

"Civic body polls are contested on local issues. Since the BJP has nothing to show by way of development, national-level leaders are campaigning.

"In its 15-year rule, the BJP has had many mayors — none of them are to be seen anywhere. Had they really worked for the people of Delhi, the party’s CMs and union ministers would not have been campaigning in the city,’" added Dutt.

On Karnataka

Congress will be forming the government in Karnataka, because people in the state are aware that BJP is a scam.

"There were scams in recruitment, commissions were charged for awarding contracts. The Congress opposition has successfully highlighted the scams and made people aware. There’s huge support for the party," said Dutt.
Sohil Sehran