The Economic Offence Wing of the Delhi Police has registered an FIR under multiple sections against the Center for Equity Studies (CES) and its officers, whose director is Harsh Mander. The FIR was registered in accordance with sections 406, 409, 420 and 120B of the IPC.
Economic offence wing of Delhi police has registered a FIR u/s 406, 409, 420, 120B of IPC Against Harsh Mander’s NGO CES and officials of CES, in which Mander holds official position of director.
— Nupur J Sharma (@UnSubtleDesi) February 20, 2021
The CES first found itself in a dispute after an inspection by the National Commission for the Protection of the Rights of the Child (NCPCR) revealed financial irregularities in shelters established by the NGO. There was also a case of child sexual abuse in one of the shelters.
The shelters in question were funded by the Center for Equity Studies, the Rainbow Foundation of India (RFI), the Association for Rural and Urban Needy (ARUN-India), the Dil Se Campaign of the Can Assist Society and Aman Biradari, another one of Harsh Mander’s organization.
As it turns out, in its FCRA submission in 2019, ARUN disclosed that it had received Rs. 35.000.000 from Islamic Relief Worldwide.
The IRW has a long history of controversy. It is prohibited to operate in Israel on allegations of funding by Hamas, which has been recognized as a terrorist organization in multiple countries. The government of Bangladesh accused the IRW of funding militants and encouraging radicals as well. The German Government also claimed that it had ties with the Muslim Brotherhood, another organization prohibited in a number of countries.
Under these circumstances, IRW funding for ARUN raises significant questions. Subsequently, the FIR was registered at the shelter home for a child sexual abuse complaint. Mander is a former member of Sonia Gandhi’s National Advisory Council (NAC) and a member of an organization with links to the Italian Secret Service and the Italian Government.