Short of funds, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is going all out to collect funds for the 2014 general elections. It is deploying innovative methods like official fundraisers over dinner or luncheon meetings, raising funds from overseas through google hangouts or by using a mobile application, “Aap ka daan (Your donation)”.
AAP’s national convener Arvind Kejriwal would be busy interacting with businessman, traders, and others at a fundraiser dinner in Bangalore this weekend. The fundraiser dinner has been driven by former Infosys CFO V Balakrishnan who is also contesting from Bangalore central seat on AAP’s ticket.
The fundraiser dinner with Kejriwal – the way it is done in western countries - comes at a price of Rs 20,000 per person which will go into party fund.
While Kejriwal will be having his dinner in Bangalore this weekend, his party’s political ideologue Yogendra Yadav will be organising similar kind of dinner in Gurgaon -from where he is contesting the Lok Sabha elections – at the reported cost of around Rs 5,000 per person.
“Already around 50 people have confirmed for the meeting. Similar kind of fundraiser dinner, lunch or breakfast meetings can be organised if a candidate can arrange in his or her area. Such meetings will be organised throughout the country,” a senior AAP leader told dna.
The senior AAP leader said such fundraisers help in collecting big money whereas during door to door campaign donation is very small.
“Both are important for AAP. We are also trying to work how corporates can come out openly and donate to us. Till now they have not been donating as they fear a backlash from ruling government at centre in case they find out about donation to AAP,” the AAP leader added.
The party is also organising a Google hangout this weekend with former top banker Meera Sanyal, AAP’s candidate from Mumbai south constituency, to attract overseas supporters and get funds for the party.
Sanyal’s selection for the hangout clearly shows that AAP wants to use her suave and clean image to attract funds for the party.
Since Delhi elections in December 2013, AAP has collected around 12.31 crores but much more is needed by AAP to fight Lok Sabha elections. AAP has set its eyes on becoming a national alternative and for that it needs to fight a majority of Lok sabha seats. It has already announced candidates for 187 seats and more lists are expected in days ahead.
Meanwhile, in another innovative method that party has recently developed is a mobile application for collection donations.
The mobile app, “AAP ka Daan (Your donation)" will only be available to volunteers and AAP candidates to collect fund.
"Using this mobile app, when a volunteer or candidate will collect money, donor’s details will be filed online at that very moment. The donor will immediately get a message whichwould serve the purpose of receipt. This way AAP will also have a record of how much money was collected by a volunteer or a candidate. The whole process will become very transparent,” AAP’s senior leader Pankaj Gupta told dna.
Also AAP will set a cap on money that a volunteer can collect in one go. “After that limit would be reached, money would have to be deposited to the party. The limit would be reset only after that. So the volunteer and candidate can seek more donations only after the money collected till that limit is deposited with party," Gupta explained.