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Piyush Goyal

BJP trying to bring ‘legitimate money’ to fund politics: Piyush Goyal

New Delhi | Railway Minister Piyush Goyal on Friday said the BJP was trying to bring “legitimate money” to fund politics and it has decided to accept donations through bonds and cheques only, while for smaller amounts under Rs 2000 also, it is insisting on digital payment.

Speaking at a Confederation of Indian Industries event titled,’India 5.0: [email protected] and Beyond’, Goyal said that at the outset of 2014, India was a” fragile 5 economy,” having double digit inflation and was in a “serious crisis” which BJP inherited.

“This election, significant amount of money for all parties is coming through bond process. We, as a policy, have decided not to accept any money, except under bond or a cheque… (Unless) somebody gives less than Rs 2000, which is a pretty small amount, but there also the prime minister has said you insist on a digital payment such as through Bhim app.

“Our party has been working relentlessly to try and clean up the political funding system, and get legitimate money to fund politics. Sensationalizing any name who has donated funds, you will scare the honest money from engaging with politics and public life,” he said.

The Supreme Court will on April 10 hear a plea on electoral bonds for political funding after several NGOs, opposition parties, and even the Election Commission of India raised concerns over their use.

Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) recently filed an application in court seeking a stay on the electoral bond scheme.

It said amendments carried out in the relevant acts have “opened the floodgates to unlimited corporate donations to political parties and anonymous financing by Indian as well as foreign companies, which can have serious repercussions on the Indian democracy”.

ADR’s findings reveal that the scheme brought a windfall for the ruling BJP.

Praising the prime minister and the finance minister for efficient management of the economy, he said investments were picking up, which were otherwise slowing down a few years back.

Goyal credited the government with bringing inflation under control and putting India back on the growth track.

“Today, we are almost touching 40,000 on sensex , low levels of inflation, interest is continuously falling, all prices have been reasonably stable. So, current account deficit is no more a concern.

“You will never find a period in Indian history where in five years, every economic parameter has improved so significantly, which means we have prepared a base for the future. In the next five years, we are looking at a huge amount of capex on the infrastructure of the country,” he said.

On jobs, he said that the nature of jobs is changing as more people are working on a contractual basis and one should benchmark more on ‘livelihood creation’ compared to conventional jobs.

The minister warned that any doles would lead to under-reporting of income and capturing authentic data on jobs would become a challenge and hinder formalization of economy.

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