Skip to main content

Gujarat cops' move against top rights activist: Anticipatory bail plea in High Court postponed till July 9

By Our Representative
Gujarat High Court hearing in the anticipatory bail applications of top human rights activist Teesta Setalvad, her husband Javed Anand and three survivors of the 2002 Gulberg Society massacre of Gujarat, Tanvir Jafri, Salim Sandhi and Firoz Gulzar Pathan has been postponed till July 9, 2014. This happened, according to a statement issued by Setalvad’s NGO Centre for Justice and Peace (CJP), following a 96 page counter affidavit “complete with detailed records from audited accounts and bank statements disproving baseless allegations made by the Crime Branch, Ahmedabad.”
In early January 2014, the crime branch of the Gujarat police filed an FIR leveling criminal charges against Setalvad and others alleging misappropriation of NGO funds for “personal gain.” This was followed by the cops’ instructions to IDBI and UBI to freeze the accounts of CJP and Sabrang Trust, the NGOs she heads. The statement adds, the whole effort of the Gujarat cops was “to financially cripple the ongoing legal battle for justice to the victims and punishment to the perpetrators and masterminds of the state-sponsored 2002 mass crimes in Gujarat.”
In their affidavit filed in the Gujarat High Court, Setalvad and Anand referred to reports filed by the auditors of CJP and Sabrang Trust with the crime branch, Ahmedabad, affirming that the allegation of embezzlement of funds by the two “were totally baseless”. The 96-page affidavit points out to “gaping holes in the repeated and equally baseless fresh allegations made by the crime branch in its June 13, 2014 affidavit filed in the Gujarat High Court.”
The affidavit, the statement says, debunks the claims of the crime branch that as much as 45% of the donations collected by the trusts went into their personal accounts. Saying that there is not “a shred of evidence that Setalvad and Anand have pocketed away crores of rupees collected by the two trusts”, adding, when the auditors of the two trusts clarified that this was not true, the Gujarat police alleged they, too, were in “connivance” with the trust.
Pointing out that “all relevant records such as vouchers/bills, books of account, minute book… were made available to us by the management of CJP for our verification”, the auditors’ report clearly stated that “we have not noticed that the funds of CJP were used by its trustees for the purpose other than its 'Objects'”, the statement said.
The auditors were quoted as saying: “On the basis of information and explanation received and documents examined by us we did not find such alleged embezzlement of funds. The funds received for public purposes from various international donors were spent wholly and exclusively for the purposes for which they were given by the funding agencies”. Also, the auditors said, they did not find any “huge cash withdrawals”, as claimed by the cops.

Comments

TRENDING

Telangana govt proposes to give unfettered powers to forest officials, 'help' corporates

By Dr Palla Trinadha Rao*
The Telangana Government is contemplating to replace the Telangana Forest Act 1967 with a new law - the Telangana Forest Act (TFA) 2019, trampling the rights of adivasis ensured under the Scheduled Tribes and other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 (FRA Act 2006) and Panchayats Extension to Schedule Area (PESA) Act 1996 both of which are central acts.

RSS, Hindu Mahasabha were 'subservient' to British masters: Nagpur varsity VC told

Counterview Desk
Well-known political scientist Shamsul Islam, associate professor (retired), University of Delhi, in an open letter to the vice-chancellor of the Rashtrasant Tukadoji Maharaj Nagpur University, Dr Siddharthavinayaka P Kane, has taken strong exception to the varsity decision to include RSS’ “role” in nation building in the syllabus of the BA (history) course, citing instances to say that the RSS ever since its birth in 1925 with its Hindutva allies like Hindu Mahasabha led by VD Savarkar worked overtime to “betray the glorious anti-colonial freedom struggle”.

It's now official: Developed Gujarat's regular, casual workers earn less than 19 top states

By Rajiv Shah
Though not as low as state chief minister Vijay Rupani claims it to be (0.9%), Gujarat’s unemployment rate, at least as reflected in a recent report released by the Government of India, is 4.8%, lower than the national average, 6%. Yet, ironically, the same report, released soon after the Lok Sabha polls came to an end in May 2019, brings to light an even grimmer reality: Lower wages in "model" and "developed" Gujarat compared to virtually the whole of India, including the so-called Bimaru states.

British companies export 'deadly' asbestos to India, other countries from offshore offices

By Rajiv Shah
“The Sunday Times”, which forms part of the powerful British daily, “The Times”, has raised the alarm that though the “deadly” asbestos is banned in Britain, companies registered in United Kingdom, and operating from other countries, “are involved in shipping it to developing nations”, especially India. India, Brazil, Russia and China account for almost 80% of the asbestos consumed globally every year, it adds.

Amaravati: World Bank refusing to share public grievances on Land Pooling Scheme

By Our Representative
A new report, prepared by the advocacy group Centre for Financial Accountability (CFA), New Delhi, has taken strong exception to the World Bank refusing to share its independent assessment of the Land Pooling Scheme (LPS), floated by the Andhra Pradesh government in order to build the new capital.

Beijing-based infrastructure bank 'funding' India's environmentally risky projects

By Our Representative
A new civil society note has questioned the operations of the Beijing-based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), a multilateral development bank that aims to support the building of infrastructure in the Asia-Pacific region, seeking to fund projects in India through the Government of India’s National Infrastructure Investment Fund (NIIF), calling it “a risky venture”.

Include all workers exposed to silica dust in anti-TB programme: Govt of India told

Counterview Desk
In a letter, sponsored by well-known civil rights organization, Occupational & Environmental Health Network of India and signed by more than 60 professionals and activists*, Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, has been told that Indian policy makers shouldn't just acknowledge higher TB risk to mine and stone crusher workers, but also “other silica-exposed workers”.

Universal healthcare? India lacks provisions to 'fight' non-communicable diseases

By Moin Qazi*
Universal health coverage (UHC) -- ensuring that all people receive proper and adequate health care without suffering financial hardship -- is an integral part of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. It enables countries to make the most of their strongest asset: human capital.

Gender budgeting? Govt of India allocates just 2.1%, 0.73% for SC, ST women

By Rajiv Shah
The National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR), one of the most influential all-India Dalit rights networks, has taken strong exception to the manner in which the Government of India has undermined Gender Responsive Budgeting in the Union Budget 2019-20 for scheduled castes (SCs) and scheduled tribes (STs), pointing towards “wide gaps” between the goals and the situational reality of “the Dalit and Adivasi women on the ground.”

Polygamy in India "down" in 45 yrs: Muslims' from 5.7 to 2.55%, Hindus' 5.8 to 1.77%, "common" in SCs, STs

By Rajiv Shah
Amidst All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) justifying polygamy, saying it “meets social and moral needs and the provision for it stems from concern and sympathy for women”, facts suggest the the practice is down from 5.7 per cent of Muslim families in 1961 to 2.55 per cent in 2006.