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CBI gets govt's nod to prosecute ex-Amnesty India Head Aakar Patel for alleged FCRA violation

CBI gets govts nod to prosecute ex-Amnesty India Head Aakar Patel for alleged FCRA violation

New Delhi: The Centre has given the go-ahead to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to prosecute former Amnesty India head Aakar Patel for alleged violation of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act.

As per a PTI report, a letter to the effect was reportedly submitted before the relevant court at Rouse Avenue in the national capital on Monday evening, days after Patel was controversially stopped at the Bengaluru airport from flying to the US.

The CBI had sought the sanction of the government to prosecute the international human rights organisation because of the mandatory clause of Section 40 of the FCRA. Section 40 bars any court to take cognisance of offence under the FCRA without the previous sanction of the Central government or any officer authorised by that government on this behalf.

The chargesheet was filed on December 31, 2021 by the agency in the Special CBI Court at Rouse Avenue against Mr Patel and Amnesty International India under Section 11 read with Sections 35 and 39 of the Act after a two-year probe into alleged violations, they said.

The court will take cognisance of charges on April 18, they said. Following the charge sheet the agency had issued a Look Out Circular (LOC) against Amnesty International India former chief on the basis of which he was stopped from leaving Bengaluru Airport for the US where he was scheduled to deliver academic lectures in various universities.

A magistrate court had allowed withdrawal of the LOC but the order was overturned last Friday by a Special Judge who had asked Mr Patel to not leave the country without its permission.

The case was registered against Amnesty International India Pvt Ltd (AIIPL), Indians For Amnesty International Trust (IAIT), Amnesty International India Foundation Trust (AIIFT), Amnesty International South Asia Foundation (AISAF) and others in November, 2019.

It was alleged that the provision of the FCRA and IPC were contravened by the aforesaid entities by receiving foreign contributions from Amnesty International UK through AIIPL even though prior registration or permissions were denied to AIIFT and other trusts under FCRA, the officials said.

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TAGS:Cbi FCRA Amnesty India 
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