No foreign aid to Naik's NGO sans govt assent

No foreign aid to Naik's NGO sans govt assent

No foreign aid to Naik's NGO sans govt assent
Controversial tele-evangelist Zakir Naik’s NGO, Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), has been barred from receiving foreign funds without prior government approval. The action comes two weeks after the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) goofed and  renewed the Foundation’s licence for receiving foreign funds, amid ongoing investigation into its affairs.

The decision to bring the NGO under prior permission category came after an MHA  preliminary inquiry, which revealed the NGO’s activities in violation of the Foreign Contributions Regulation Act (FCRA) and irregularities in its account books. Sources said examination of account books showed that the NGO had not revealed certain donations it had received.

Hence forth, the IRF cannot accept any foreign donation. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) would have to first inform the Home Ministry about the funds coming to the NGO and permission obtained from the Ministry before releasing the funds.

Dhaka terror attack
Naik had hit headlines after it emerged that one of the five terrorists who stormed a Dhaka restaurant in July was inspired by the Mumbai-based preacher, who trained as a doctor. Following this, government agencies started investigating if he had any links with  terror outfits. The Ministry of Home Affairs also began probing the activities of IRF following allegations that foreign funds were misused for political activities and to induce people towards Islam. IRF is said to have received around Rs 15 crore between 2006 and 2011.

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