Ministry of Home Affairs calls for CBI probe against Harsh Mander’s NGO Aman Biradari

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The Union Ministry has recommended a probe by CBI against Harsh Mander’s NGO, Aman Biradari, for alleged FCRA violation.

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs has recommended a Central Bureau of Investigation inquiry against activist Harsh Mander’s non-governmental organization Aman Biradari for alleged violation of foreign funding norms. The NGO has been suspected of being allegedly involved in Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) violation.

Harsh Mander, who was a member of the Sonia Gandhi-led National Advisory Council during the erstwhile UPA government, founded Aman Biradari – a people’s campaign for a secular, peaceful, just and humane world.

“Aman Biradari works closely with other people’s organisations and groups for the defence of secularism; for public compassion; and for promoting the values of the Constitution,” as alleged on its website.

Harsh Mander, who was part of the campaign against the Citizenship Amendment Act, has previously been under the scanner of the Enforcement Directorate in connection with a money laundering case. A group of over 600 eminent persons had at the time said that the raids were part of the Centre’s use of government institutions to “threaten, intimidate and silence” its critics.

In October 2022, the MHA cancelled the FCRA registration of the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation (RGF) and the Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust (RGCT) — two NGOs headed by Sonia Gandhi for alleged violations of laws.

The police had registered a case against Mander-led Centre for Equity Studies (CES) in February 2021 following a complaint by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), accusing it of violations in two children's homes 'Umeed Aman Ghar’ and ‘Khushi Rainbow Home’.

The trust has however been accused of receiving foreign donations in violation of FCRA law. It is a mandatory procedure for all NGOs to register with MHA in order to receive foreign funding.