Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh donated a huge chunk of his assets - anywhere between Rs 4.6 crore and Rs 23 crore, 20% of his declared assets - to the Clinton Foundation.
He is keeping mum for the most part, except to say, that the “payment could have been made by someone else on his behalf ’’.
A report in The New York Times stated:
“Mr Singh visited the US in September to lobby for a deal allowing India to obtain civil nuclear technology even though it never signed the NPT. He met with Mrs Clinton who he said assured him that the Democrats would not block the deal. Congress approved it weeks later.”
What intrigues me is that until not very long ago Amar Singh and company were opposed to the Congress. Why was getting this nuclear deal signed so important to them? Is he going to use it to buy more tickets for the SP if they have an electoral alliance with the Congress? Is there is tacit agreement to prop up Hillary, who anyway collects loads of money, to get a prime position for herself in the Obama government? Is there a future possibility of kickbacks?
Why has one never heard about Amar Singh contributing such huge sums to Indian charities?
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Talking of which, here is a rather interesting report. Highlighting such news is also important:
Foreign contributions to Indian non-governmental organisations (NGOs) rose by a whopping 56% from Rs 7,878 crore in 2005-06 to Rs 12,290 crore in 2006-07, according to statistics released by the home ministry on “foreign funds to NGOs’’.
Indian NGOs have not only been getting money from big donors like the US, Germany, the United Kingdom, Switzerland and Italy, but are also receiving contributions from Pakistan which contributed Rs 43.28 lakh in 2004-05, Rs 71.70 lakh in 2005-06 and Rs 21.99 lakh in 2006-07.
What is even more important is that the home ministry gave a written reply in the Lok Sabha saying:
“There are no specific inputs to indicate misuse of foreign contribution by the registered associations (under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act) for terrorist activities.’’
The ministry pointed out that no association having a definite cultural, economic, educational, religious or social programme could accept foreign contributions without registration or prior permission under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 1976. “However, as and when complaints relating to the violation of the provisions of the FCRA against associations come to the notice of the government, appropriate action is taken,’’ it said.