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Wednesday, April 17 2024
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Congress Struggles for Funds Amid Alleged Tax Evasion Case in Karnataka

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The ongoing tax evasion case against the Congress party has created challenges for candidates in Karnataka as they strive to secure resources for their election campaigns. Despite the Income Tax (I-T) department’s assurance to the Supreme Court not to take coercive action regarding a tax demand of Rs 3,500 crore until the conclusion of elections, party officials indicate a shortage of funds persists, complicating their electioneering efforts.

Vinay Karthik, treasurer of the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC), disclosed that the All India Congress Committee (AICC) has advised against withdrawing funds from the state unit’s bank accounts due to technical complications arising from the ongoing case. Consequently, the party awaits further instructions from the AICC before allocating funds, even for essential activities like party advertisements.

Candidates, unable to access funds from fixed deposit accounts, have been instructed by party leadership to manage campaign expenses independently. Unlike previous elections, Congress has decided not to allocate any funds this time, directing candidates to seek financial support through local donations or crowdfunding if necessary.

Although some candidates possess the means to finance their campaigns independently, others in constituencies like Chitradurga, Bangalore North, Kolar, and Udupi-Chikmagalur have encountered difficulties. To address this, party leaders have dispatched teams to facilitate fundraising efforts by engaging with donors and supporters.

However, the looming threat of income tax notices has instilled hesitancy among potential donors, exacerbating the funding challenge. Even party officials, including the state president, have been served fresh notices by the I-T department. Despite these obstacles, party leaders express gratitude for the overwhelming sympathy and support received, expressing hope to overcome the crisis.

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