ED slaps Rs 61.72 cr FEMA penalty against Amnesty India, ex-CEO Aakar Patel

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New Delhi, July 8: The Enforcement Directorate (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.

Patel said they will challenge the ED action in court.

The federal probe agency show caused Amnesty India International Pvt. Ltd (AIIPL) with a penalty notice, issued under the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), of Rs 51.72 crore, while the fine amount against Patel is Rs 10 crore.

The order has been issued on completion of the probe by the adjudicating authority of FEMA, which is a special director rank officer of the ED.

The agency alleged London-based Amnesty International sent huge amount of foreign contributions to its Indian entities (AIIPL), during November 2013 to June 2018, “in guise of business activities” to escape FCRA scrutiny”.

FCRA stands for Foreign Contribution Regulation Act.

“The ED is the govt not the judiciary. we will fight it (again) and win (again) in court,” Patel tweeted through a handle which is unverified.

The agency said it initiated a FEMA probe on the basis of information that Amnesty International, UK had been remitting “huge amount” of foreign contribution through its Indian entities (non-FCRA companies) following FDI (foreign direct investment) route, in order to evade FCRA to expand its NGO activities in India.

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