Amnesty India rubbishes ED allegations; says govt curbing critics
Calling allegations of money laundering patently untrue, Amnesty International India on Saturday said curbing its critics under repressive laws has become routine for the current Indian government.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has alleged that London-based Amnesty International sent huge amount of foreign contribution to its Indian entities (AIIPL), during November 2013-June 2018, "in guise of business activities" to escape FCRA scrutiny.
The ED Friday said it has issued a penalty of more than Rs 61 crore against Amnesty India and its former head Aakar Patel for allegedly contravening the Indian foreign exchange law.
Reacting, the Amnesty India International called the allegations false.
We reiterate that the allegations of @dir_ed, a financial investigation agency under @FinMinIndia, that Amnesty International India was involved in 'money laundering', are patently untrue, the Amnesty International India said in a tweet.
The malicious intent of the Enforcement Directorate is evident from the fact that they have yet again issued multiple press releases even before legal notices have reached @AIIndia and @Aakar__Patel. This is a violation of the principles of natural justice, the human rights group said in one of the several tweets it made.
Since September 2020, the bank accounts of Amnesty International India remain frozen with no means to pay full dues to ex-employees or for the services of lawyers engaged to fight the multiple court cases initiated by the Government of India, the group said in another tweet.
As a member of the @UN_HRC, India is required to uphold the highest standards in the promotion and protection of human rights. On the contrary, putting a squeeze on its critics through trumped-up charges under repressive laws has become routine for this Indian Government, it said.