Since 2012, Aam Aadmi Party founder Arvind Kejriwal has been targeting the Ambani brothers, alleging crony capitalism and black money.
And days before he quit as the Delhi chief minister, Kejriwal got an FIR lodged against Reliance Industries Limited chief Mukesh Ambani, Oil Minister Veerappa Moily and some others over gas pricing.
Now, the AAP seems ready to take political funding from Mukesh Ambani, if such a situation arises.
Indiatoday.in asked AAP’s Yogendra Yadav if the party will accept funds from Mukesh Ambani if he were to offer it.
In reply, Yadav said: “If they give us Rs.9,99,999, and if people of Mumbai accept it, then it would not go to (AAP’s) Political Affairs Committee (PAC). Once it crosses this figure and touches Rs.10 lakh, then this issue will be kept before AAP’s supreme authority, the Political Affairs Committee, saying such money is coming, does this money have a problem (‘Gadbad to nahin hai?’), then we will ask the people, like you, to tell us: ‘Is Mukesh Ambani’s money having any problem (‘gadbad’).”
Yadav clarified again: “First is transparency; second is no quid pro quo. There should be no formal or informal quid pro quo. It should not be, in our view, tainted money. That is why it would go to Political Affairs Committee and not financial committee. Then only we will take a decision.”
But in his reply, Yadav did not say no.
Yadav was in Mumbai on Tuesday for a closed-door meeting with select bankers and industrialists hosted by former banker and AAP leader Meera Sanyal and Axis Bank honcho Manshia Lath-Gupta.
Yadav met about 200 business leaders to persuade them on AAP’s ideology that “it is not against businessmen, but against dishonest businessmen”. However, the exercise was designed for fundraising.
Meera Sanyal told Indiatoday.in that the party was open to corporate funding. “One principle is that we will accept donation by cheque. Even if we accept funds by cash, it would be stated on AAP’s website. The issue with corporate funding is if it is hidden and non-transparent, then nobody knows who and why money was given. So there is nothing wrong with corporate funding but with no quid pro quo. We are against it.”