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Congress Got Rs 139 Cr Donations In 2019-20; Sonia Gandhi gave Rs 50,000, Sibal Rs 3 Cr

The Congress party received in total a sum of Rs 139 crores as donations during 2019-2020 revealed the contributions report published in the public domain by EC


The Congress party received in total a sum of Rs 139 crores as donations during 2019-2020 revealed the contributions report published in the public domain by the Election Commission. Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal was the highest individual donor  - having given Rs 3 crores to the party fund while former PM Manmohan Singh contributed Rs 1,08,000. Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul donated Rs 50,000 and Rs 54,000 respectively between April 1, 2019, and May 31, 2020.Other Congress leaders such as Shashi Tharoor, Anand Sharma, and Gulam Nabi Azad made donations of Rs 54,000. Milind Deora and Raj Babbar donated over Rs 1 lakh to the party. Apart from the party leaders, Congress received Rs 19 crores from ITC and its associate companies while Prudent Electoral Trust contributed Rs 31 crore.

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As per provisions of the electoral laws, political parties have to report contributions above Rs 20,000 made by individuals, companies, electoral trusts, and organizations. The contribution document was submitted to the EC by Congress in December last year and was signed by the party's interim Treasurer Pawan Bansal. It is pertinent to note that Kapil Sibal and Azad belonged to the group of 23 leaders who wrote to Sonia Gandhi seeking a revamp of the party's organizational structure. 

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How Congress suffers from a leadership crisis

The Congress party has decided to conduct the polls for its chief in May this year, as per sources, even as the party faces a leadership crisis. After the Bihar debacle, senior leaders like Kapil Sibal and P Chidambaram have come out in open and questioned the leadership. However, a group of Congress leaders have once again pitched the name of Rahul Gandhi for the top post, with the Delhi Congress even passing a resolution for the same. Earlier, 23 top leaders had written to interim chief Sonia Gandhi demanding robust changes in the party. Though Sonia Gandhi managed to quell the rebellion, voices against the leadership has risen due to poor performances in back to back elections.

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It must be noted that dissenting voices had risen in the Congress party a few months ago against the backdrop of the fight between Sachin Pilot and Ashok Gehlot in Rajasthan. Senior Congress leaders like Kapil Sibal and Ghulam Nabi Azad had then spoken openly against the Central leadership of the Gandhis. However, interim Congress chief Sonia Gandhi was able to quash the rebellion and had assured party members of reviewing the raised demands. 

Congress has been in a leadership dilemma since Rahul Gandhi quit as party chief in the post-Lok Sabha 2019 debacle. This led to a barrage of resignations from various posts. Amidst a lot of turmoil with Priyanka Vadra also being considered, Congress finally went back to their safe option and named Sonia Gandhi as its interim chief. Recently, her tenure was again extended. While some loyalists have time and again implored 50-year-old Rahul Gandhi to take back the reins of the party, this has also been met with significant opposition. Moreover, prominent Congress leaders like Jyotiraditya Scindia, Khushbu Sundar have quit the party and joined BJP. 

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