Right to Information – Master key to good governance

Put NGOs under RTI scalpel

Posted by rtiact2005 on August 9, 2006

Put NGOs under RTI scalpel

Sandhya Jain (Pioneer Delhi) 8.8.2006

The $50,000 Magsaysay Award was recently conferred upon Arvind
Kejriwal, a former Indian Revenue Service officer campaigning for the
Right to Information (RTI). Though several Indians have received this
prize from Philippines, not many citizens are aware that this is
actually an American award for Asians. Set up by the Rockefeller
Brothers Foundation, most of the purse comes from the Ford Foundation.

The citation does not say when Mr Kejriwal resigned from service, but
mentions his association with Parivartan, an entity campaigning for
RTI. Mr Kejriwal was in service when he was with Parivartan, which is
not a registered NGO (a Society, Trust, or S.25 Company). Under income
tax, it is an Association of Persons (AoP), a coming together of
persons with a profit-motive so that members can share its income,
unlike in a registered society. The Parivartan website conceals its
AoP, barring one Manish Sisodia (part-time volunteer, founder-member
and treasurer), and terms of association, yet demands a level of
transparency from governmental agencies that is not in vogue anywhere
in the world.

In a timely study on some of India’s most exalted conscience-keepers,
Radha Rajan and Krishen Kak argue for public scrutiny of those who
hold society or government to ransom, usually at the behest of foreign
sponsors (NGOs, Activists & Foreign Funds. Anti-Nation Industry, Vigil
Public Opinion Forum, 2006). Kak’s meticulous research shows that in
FY 2002-03, Parivartan showed receipts for Rs 2,02,489 (Rs 2,01,889
are donations); the total expenditure is Rs 1,88,164, of which
salaries take Rs 1,14,000. The only ‘programme cost’ is Rs 35,945 on a
‘jan sunwai’ public hearing), and the rest is standard administrative

However, Parivartan claims its annual fixed costs are approximately Rs
six lakh, and programme costs are “partly funded through collections
from the community itself including poor people and the shortfall is
made good by raising funds from outside”. Its website does not say if
these funds are included in the receipts statement and if receipts are
issued for small sums given by poor people. Yet it wants to make the
Government of India accountable to itself on behalf of the “people of

Radha Rajan argues that many high-profile NGOs serve America’s vision
of a post-Cold-War world order. Hence they advocate ‘communal harmony’
in India even as jihad batters the Hindu community, and promote
‘peace’ with Pakistan despite its formidable terrorist infrastructure.
They are essentially political activists using social activism as a
mask for their crusade against an independent nationalist India. Thus
they are invariably anti-Government of India, anti-military,
anti-police, anti-nuclear, and, of course, anti-Hindu.

America uses the Magsaysay and other awards to legitimise its
loyalists. Indian Magsaysay awardees include Mahasweta Devi (1997),
Aruna Roy and Martin Macwan (2000), Sandeep Pandey (2002), Nirmala
Deshpande and Admiral Ramdas (2005). Then, Praful Bidwai and Achin
Vanaik received the Sean Macbride Peace Prize (2000) and Arundhati Roy
the Sydney Peace Prize (2004). In neighbouring Nepal, journalist
Bharat Koirala got the Magsaysay in 2002 for unleashing the anti-Hindu
process there. Today, a Christian Prachanda has taken over the country
by terrorising the effete political parties and the king is a virtual

Krishen Kak’s expose of Harsh Mander (Scoring Against Paganism:
Untangling the Manderweb) is a warning to the Government about the
monetary subversion of serving officers by foreign regimes. In March
2002, Mander, an IAS officer, became an international celebrity when
he attacked the communal violence in Gujarat (after 58 Hindus were
burnt alive at Godhra) in an article in a leading newspaper. Feted in
the West, he claimed he had resigned from the IAS on moral grounds.

This was a deliberate falsehood, says Kak, as Mander was serving the
politico-communal agenda of ActionAid, his British employer. Mander
had managed a profitable deputation to ActionAid, getting part payment
in pound sterling in return for scuttling a government enquiry into
its communal agenda in India.

Managing to ward off moves to end his deputation, Mander took
voluntary retirement only on completing pensionable service. He sought
retirement benefits to the tune of up to a million rupees; the
Government stipulated that he cease working for ActionAid; he refused
and continued demanding retirement benefits. When Kak publicly
challenged the lie that he had resigned on moral grounds, Mander
quickly modified his rhetoric.

ActionAid’s communal agenda may well be the inspiration for the UPA’s
Sachar Committee, and shows how foreign agendas are wormed into the
topmost echelons of power. It recently initiated a study to sensitise
the public and civil society activists about “the dismal economic,
educational and social conditions of the Muslim masses”. Of course,
ActionAid conducted no similar study about Hindu survivors in Pakistan
and Bangladesh.

ActionAid used Mander to connect over 300 voluntary agencies. Its
patronage extended to Aruna Roy of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan
(MKSS) and National Campaign of People’s Right to Information (NCPRI).
The MKSS takes foreign institutional support in kind to evade
reporting its funds under FCRA. The MKSS-approved Lok Shikshan
Sansthan states that FCRA money can be sent to its founder-NGO Prayas
or to the Roy-connected SWRC Tilonia “and it would be transferred to
our organisation’

s account.” Very interesting!

Kak’s research has uncovered an hitherto unknown entity patronised by
Mander-ActionAid. This is the “unstructured organisation”, which
solicits public money but does not say if it is registered and how it
banks the money. Shabnam Hashmi’s ANHAD (with Mander, KN Panikkar and
Shubha Mudgal) is one such body. So is the Aman Ekta Manch, Aman
Samudaya, Aman Jathas, Aman Pathiks. Mander’s Aashray Adhikar Abhiyan,
funded by ActionAid, does not reveal the names of the core team of
eleven professionals, or its accounts.

The disturbing aspect of these unregistered unstructured organisations
is their complete lack of accountability or legal scrutiny regarding
foreign donations. Ex-IAS officers and ex-judges often provide
respectability and protection to such dubious bodies in return for
post-retirement sinecures. It is a vicious and dangerous circle.

Russia learnt the hard way that unmonitored West-funded NGOs triggered
the spate of revolutions in the former Soviet Republics and out them
under the scanner. The majesty of the Indian state cannot be
subordinated to hupny-tupny rabble-rousers funded by the West. The
Government should immediately bring all activists under the RTI
scalpel; this will literally scalp them.


One Response to “Put NGOs under RTI scalpel”

  1. greetika said

    honestly! get over th fact that teh plight of hindus in other countries is not looked into. be happy that ur citizens are cared for. lameness.

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