Bengaluru: Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday raided the Amnesty International offices in Bengaluru. News agency PTI reported that the searches were conducted at two locations in Bengaluru in connection with Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) probe against Amnesty International. The probe against the NGO was reportedly initiated in August for alleged irregularities under the act.
“Enforcement Directorate (ED) has been conducting raids at Amnesty International’s office in Karnataka’s Bengaluru since 2 pm, today,” news agency ANI reported. News agency PTI cited ED officials as saying that the searches were conducted to look for related documents in the FEMA case. The matter pertains to FDI violations and revocation of FCRA licenses of the NGO by the Union Home Ministry in 2010.
“After Amnesty International India Foundation Trust (AIIFT) was denied the permission/registration under FCRA (Foreign Contribution Regulation Act) by the MHA (ministry of home affairs) they resorted to bypassing the FCRA by floating commercial entity in the name of Amnesty International India Pvt Ltd (AIIPL).
“This entity has received foreign funds through commercial route to the extent of Rs 36 crore till date,” the ED said in a statement. “This amount was immediately placed in FDs (fixed deposits) and another Indian entity– Indians for Amnesty International Trust (IAIT) had established an overdraft facility for Rs 14.25 crore keeping the said 10 crore FD as collateral which means the receipt of FDI by trust only.
“The remaining Rs 26 crore was received in two other bank accounts of AIIPL as consultancy services. The inwards remittances received by the AIIPL from overseas is in violation of FDI guidelines,” it said.