Aam Admi Party(AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal kick started the party’s fund-raising campaign for the Delhi assembly elections by hosting a Rs. 20,000 per plate dinner for young professionals, diamond merchants and bankers in Mumbai.
“We collected Rs. 91 lakh from the fund-raiser dinner last night. Rs. 36 lakh were collected from donor passes, Rs. 36 lakh was through cheque donation from those who came and our volunteers collected Rs. 21 lakh,” AAP leader Preeti Sharma Menon said. “The next fundraiser will be in Bengaluru. We are impressed with the response to our fund-raiser drive,” she said.
With online donations, AAP is looking to raise funds differently to take on BJP which is relying on ‘brand Modi’.
“The Mumbai dinner had space for a maximum of 200 donors, mostly our supporters. Most of those who attended were young professionals, some diamond merchants and a few directors from Bollywood,” she said.
AAP’s Maharashtra unit has a target of raising Rs. 5 crore over the next two months through reach-out drives,” she said.
In the run-up to this year’s Lok Sabha elections, Mr. Kejriwal had in March hosted a fund-raising dinner in Bengaluru inviting criticism from Congress which questioned whether the AAP leader – who then also charged Rs. 20,000 per person for having a meal with him – could claim to represent the common man.
“Kejriwal has appealed people to donate for the party,” Ms Menon said.
To encourage donations, AAP is tweeting online donors’ names with the hashtag #IFundHonestPolitics.
After the Delhi Assembly elections in December 2013, the party has so far received donations from over a lakh donors.
The maximum money has come from Maharashtra, followed by Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.