Several RTI activists have dismissed finance minister Arun Jaitley’s announcement that cash donations to political parties will now be capped at Rs 2000, down from the earlier limit of Rs 20,000. They have questioned the intent behind the decision – it is meant to increase transparency and accountability in political donations – saying the decision actually leaves open a wide window for manipulations and non-disclosures.
Why not make Aadhaar mandatory for donations?
The most simple of questions was raised by RTI activist and former information commissioner Shailesh Gandhi, who demanded to know what stopped Jaitley from making Aadhaar mandatory for all donations. “This is just a façade that they have done something. The simple solution would have been to say that all donors should give Aadhaar card numbers and there is hardly anybody without it now. And any computer software would have been able to figure out if a number was used repeatedly.”
Noting that he has suggested this solution several times, Gandhi said “there attempts to be an attempt to show that we are doing something, everyone will say what great announcement – but instead of showing 10 donors now the parties would show 100 donors of small amounts in order to avoid fair disclosure”. Read More