Madhya Pradesh Congress drops cash for ticket' plan

Congress sources said the letter has been sent to the AICC legal cell for scrutiny.

Bhopal: The “cash for ticket” proposal mooted by AICC general secretary in-charge of Madhya Pradesh Deepak Babaria to tide over financial crisis facing Congress has been suspended in view of its legal implications, sources said on Thursday.

The move by the party comes after a lawyer of Gwalior circuit bench of Madhya Pradesh Pavan Raghuvamsi took up the matter with the Congress high command cautioning that it might attract provisions of People’s Representation Act, 1951.

“I have written a letter to Congress president Rahul Gandhi and marked the copy to Mr Babaria as well as other senior Congress leaders such as AICC general secretary Digvijay Singh, party MPs Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia and Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Ajey Singh drawing their attention to the legal complications the move might face,” Mr Raghuvamsi, whose grandfather late Ajey Singh Raghuvamsi, was a Congress MLA from Vidisha in MP, told this newspaper on Thursday.

According to Mr Raghuvamsi, the proposal which sought Rs 50,000 in form of demand draft from ticket aspirants for the forthcoming Assembly elections in the state amounted to violation of 29(B) of People’s Representation Act relating to mobilisation of funds by a political party.

The law allowed the individuals, groups or organisations to “offer” contributions to political parties, which clearly meant not to seek favour, Mr Raghuvamsi said, adding, “The proposal suggested by Mr Babaria to mobilise funds by asking the ticket aspirants to deposit '50,000 amounted to allurement, not voluntary contribution, and hence contravention of the law”.

“My intention was to alert the Congress leadership not to take recourse to the particular way of mobilising funds to save the party from landing in legal trouble,” the lawyer added.

Congress sources said the letter has been sent to the AICC legal cell for scrutiny.

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