Vastavam web: The PM CARES Fund, set up in March to deal with emergency situations like the COVID-19 pandemic, received Rs 3,076.62 crore in just five days of its formation, as per an account statement made public by the fund on Wednesday. It put the fund’s closing balance as on March 31, 2020 at Rs 3,076.62 crore, after including interest income and deducting service tax on forex conversion. According to details posted on the website of the ‘Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund (PM CARES Fund)’, the fund consists “entirely of voluntary contributions from individuals/organisations and does not get any budgetary support”.
“During 2019-20 (from March 27-31, 2020), an amount of Rs 3076.62 crore has been collected under PM CARES Fund,” it said. It further said this fund has been set up as a public charitable trust “keeping in mind the need for having a dedicated national fund with the primary objective of dealing with any kind of emergency or distress situation, like posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, and to provide relief to the affected”.
Reacting to the account statement of the fund, Congress leader P Chidambaram said the auditors of the fund have confirmed that the fund received Rs 3,076 crore in just five days, but the “names of these generous donors will not be revealed”. “Every other NGO or Trust is obliged to reveal the names of donors contributing more than a threshold amount. Why is the PM CARES Fund exempt from this obligation,” he tweeted. “The donee is known. The trustees of the donee are known. Why are the trustees afraid to reveal the names of the donors?,” Chidambaram said.