The long list of donations made to the Gandhi Family controlled Rajiv Gandhi Foundation seems to have opened a can of worms for the Congress party.
After it was revealed that even the Chinese government had made donations to the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, now another explosive detail has emerged.
The Congress government while in power was doling out largesse to the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation (RGF) and Manmohan Singh as Finance Minister in 1991 tried to allocate Rs 100 crore over 5 years.
The disclosures came to light as the RGF came under scrutiny following an expose that the Government of China and China Embassy were donors to the Foundation.
This is an instance of Congress government patronage for RGF paid out of taxpayers money. The Budget Speech of 1991-92 by Manmohan Singh, Minister of Finance presented on July 24, 1991 has the detail.
"The Rajiv Gandhi Foundation has been established to perpetuate the memory of the great leader and to promote the ideals and objectives for which he lived and laid down his life," Singh said.
"This Foundation, among other things, will lay particular emphasis on research and action programmes relating to the application of science and technology for development, propagation of literacy, the protection of the environment, the promotion of communal harmony and national integration, the uplift of the under-privileged, women and handicapped persons, administrative reforms and India''s role in the global economy," he added.
"As a homage to the late Shri Rajiv Gandhi and in support of the laudable objectives of the Foundation, Government has decided to contribute Rs 100 crore to the Foundation at the rate of Rs 20 crores per annum for a period of five years beginning from the current year," the then Finance Minister said in the Budget speech.
However, in the subsequent discussions that followed, Manmohan Singh had read a letter from the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, that stated that the Foundation appreciates the generous sum but it thinks that the government should itself invest the funds in suitable projects.
With IANS Inputs
As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.
Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.
We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.
Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.