NEW DELHI(PTI): The Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a case against civil rights activist…
New Delhi(Indiatoday):The Ministry of Home Affairs has cleared the file revoking the FCRA registration of activist Teesta Setalvad’s NGO Sabrang Trust.Sabrang has been charged with diverting foreign contributions from Ford Foundation to non-FCRA registered entities and also violating other FCRA provisions.
Former Home Secretary LC Goyal had earlier objected to cancelling the FCRA clearance of Setalwad’s NGO. But with Goyal being shunted out of the Home Ministry, the new incumbent Rajeev Mehrishi has given his go ahead to suspending the registration of Sabrang Trust under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010 and also serving it a notice for cancellation of the NGO’s FCRA licence.
FCRA clearance is required by NGOs to be able to generate funds from foreign sources. The government’s action will henceforth bar all foreign funding to the NGO. Sabrang has been charged with diverting foreign contributions from Ford Foundation to non-FCRA registered entities and also violating other FCRA provisions.
Ministry of Home Affairs sources told India Today that the FCRA wings has been able to build a strong case against Teesta Setalwad. Sabrang Trust is charged with using foreign donations to the tune of $2,50,000 received from the Ford Foundation for purposes other than for what the grant was received. The trust is alleged to have used the Ford grant to identify and lobby with journalists to fight communalism in India. The FCRA wing of MHA claims this is unlawful because the trust is registered under FCRA as an educational and social organisation.
MHA files show that Teesta and her husband had been using NGO funds for their personal expenses, in addition to drawing a fixed salary. The investigation into Sabrang Trust’s records accounts shows that Setalvad and her husband had spent over 64 per cent of the total donation worth Rs 48.42