MILLION DOLLARS SLAPS FOR KEJRIWAL
Attacks on its leader Arvind Kejriwal appear to be a blessing in disguise for the Aam Aadmi Party. Donations to the party have registered a significant increase after four of the five attacks on Kejriwal. After Tuesday’s attack, the party received contributions of over Rs 85 lakh from the previous day’s Rs 29 lakh.
Despite this spike, AAP has only managed to collect Rs 24.53 crore from 86,649 donors from 111 countries since December 12. This is a far cry from the Rs 100 crore target that the party has set for itself. Kejriwal has been at the receiving end of ink splotches, eggs, punches and slaps during the last two months of campaigning across the country. On March 28, he was hit on the neck at Rohtak, Haryana. That day, the party collected Rs 42 lakh in donations compared to Rs 39 lakh the previous day.
Similarly, after Kejriwal was punched and slapped at Dakshinpuri in south Delhi on April 4, online donations soared to Rs 1.35 crore from the previous day’s Rs 35.13 lakh. When ink and eggs were thrown at the AAP leader in Varanasi on March 25, donations increased to Rs 48 lakh from Rs 19 lakh. Contributions went up sharply on Tuesday after Kejriwal was slapped by an apparently disgruntled auto driver. An AAP leader, in fact, said traffic on the party website witnessed a huge increase on Tuesday, causing a technical glitch.
The only exception to this trend was when Kejriwal was attacked on March 8 in Ahmedabad, when donations came down from Rs 16.46 lakh to Rs 13 lakh. But party leaders are concerned at the slow pace of donations. This is in sharp contrast to the Delhi assembly elections where the party was able to collect Rs 20 crore and even announced that it would not take any more donations after it met its target.