ED freezes bank ac­counts of Green­peace, linked en­tity

Millennium Post - - Mp Nation - OUR COR­RE­SPON­DENT

NEW DELHI: The En­force­ment Direc­torate (ED) has frozen over a dozen bank ac­counts of en­vi­ron­men­tal NGO Green­peace and its linked en­tity af­ter it con­ducted searches at their premises in Ben­galuru on charges of al­leged forex vi­o­la­tions, of­fi­cials said on Thurs­day.

The NGO said in a state­ment that it strongly de­nies all al­le­ga­tions against it and that the ED ac­tion was “part of a larger de­sign to muz­zle demo­cratic dis­sent in the coun­try”.

Of­fi­cial sources in the cen­tral probe agency said the searches, un­der the For­eign Ex­change Man­age­ment Act (FEMA), were con­ducted on Oc­to­ber 5 in Ben­galuru as it was de­tected that it in­cor­po­rated a com­mer­cial en­tity called DDIIPL in 2016 af­ter the Union Home Min­istry can­celled Green­peace In­dia So­ci­ety’s (Chen­nai) FCRA reg­is­tra­tion the pre­vi­ous year for al­leged vi­o­la­tion of norms.

“Ev­ery ru­pee that goes into Green­peace In­dia’s en­vi­ron­men­tal work is a do­na­tion made by eco­log­i­cally con­scious peo­ple in the coun­try.

“Green­peace In­dia’s work for clean air, pro­mo­tion of re­new­able en­ergy, safe food for all and cli­mate change mit­i­ga­tion is car­ried out with a unique com­bi­na­tion of pas­sion and pro­fes­sion­al­ism. We strongly ob­ject to at­tempts of de­fam­ing Green­peace In­dia through false claims and ac­cu­sa­tions,” the NGO said.

Of­fi­cial sources said the ED searches were car­ried out on charges of “con­tra­ven­tion of the FEMA” and the of­fice premises of DDIIPL and Green­peace In­dia So­ci­ety were cov­ered.

The agency said Ms Direct Di­a­logue Ini­tia­tives In­dia Pvt Ltd (DDIIPL) was cre­ated to “fa­cil­i­tate the op­er­a­tional ac­tiv­i­ties of Green­peace” and claimed that the new en­tity re­ceived FDI of Rs 99 lakh from a Nether­land-based or­gan­i­sa­tion fol­lowed by an­other tranche of Rs 15 crore.

“As on date, DDIIPL re­ceived for­eign direct in­vest­ment (FDI) to the tune of Rs 29 crore,” the agency said in a state­ment. It said a Bri­tish na­tional was also made the direc­tor of DDIIPL in Oc­to­ber, 2017. “We do not have any­thing to hide and are ready to pro­vide the gov­ern­ment with fi­nan­cial de­tails as re­quired. At the same time, we will re­serve the right to chal­lenge... as an in­de­pen­dent en­vi­ron­men­tal or­gan­i­sa­tion,” Green­peace said.

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