Nobody is willing to put his money on Rahul Gandhi’s Congress at the moment, it appears

The Congress party has decided to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Rajasthan in a novel way, reports Business Standard.

Currently cash starved, and with hardly any business houses willing to bet on the Rahul Gandhi-headed political outfit at this juncture, the Congress is now hoping to source funds from the ‘Aam Janata’ in a bid to upstage the BJP.

The Rajasthan Assembly polls are due sometime this year.

As of Sunday (16 September), the party managed to crowdsource Rs 2,00,000, which is one per cent of what it hoped to collect during the 77-day campaign. Party leaders told the media such weak contributions would hardly suffice if a hard poll battle was to be fought.

According to sources in the party, the National Students Union of India (NSUI), the student wing of the Congress, had hardly any funds to fight the Delhi University Students Union elections, and that is why they lost to the BJP’s Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP).

Party leaders on condition of anonymity also complained that owing to the fund crunch, they were forced to travel by train and stay in dingy hotels despite being used to luxury when the party was ‘rich’. When the Congress was flush with money, air travel by party workers was considered the ‘norm’.

The situation, say local leaders, is so bad that in the districts, that even cost-cutting for items such as tea and snacks had to be resorted to.

According to party sources, the treasurer, Ahmed Patel, is believed to have met some of the biggest industrialists in the country to seek funds, but their response had been unenthusiastic.

Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Mizoram and Telangana are scheduled for polls in December. The Congress feels that if it won at least a few states, then its financial position would improve.

Sources say the recent Congress party attack on Anil Ambani in the context of the Rafale deal has made business houses wary of the its motives, and, hence, have shown little interest in funding the outfit.