A letter supposedly written by social activist Anna Hazare to Arvind Kejriwal has called for an urgent need to chart out methodically, the funds collected for India Against Corruption. Hazare claims that inspite of numerous meetings taking place, a detail and exact report about the mode of expense has not yet been chartered out. Referring to unwarranted expenses as being unfeasible, Hazare reiterates in the letter that public money must not be spent for anything other than the specified campaign for corruption.
The letter begins by Hazare raising concern over an e-mail written by team member Kiran Bedi. The letter written by Bedi is supposed to have stated how important it is for Public Cause Research Foundation to create and present its detailed budget.
“It is important to chart out how the funds are going to be used….. the money that has been collected belongs to the public and therefore it is important to make any kind of an expense wisely,” says Hazare’s letter.
“Funds should be spent wisely, according to needs. But it is inappropriate to spend when there is no need for the same. I had once stated in the core committee meeting regarding the accountability of public funds. ….. In fact it is vital that we place before every core committee meeting, a clear outline of how money is being spent. The core committee’s consensus is required regarding the financial statement of the organization,” voices Hazare to Kejriwal.
In the letter, Hazare makes it clear that the Trust’s money belongs to the public as the money has been contributed by people, following the uprising against corruption they witnessed. Therefore every member of the trust is answerable to the public. “There have been many core committee meetings after 16 August, 2011. But till now, I have never been aware of how the money is being spent. If this is the case, how will the core committee or the public ever come to know how the money has been spent?” states the veteran social activist.
Hazare has made it clear that a mere audit report is not sufficient for this. “…even if Rs.5 has been spent, it is important to document the same to the core committee.” Hazare has stated that he is not very happy regarding the general attitude of affairs. “When i voice out concerns, it is being termed as accusation. This is not right,” claimed Hazare.
The letter can be read here:
Allegations against misappropriation of funds were earlier levelled against the group by Mufti Shameen Kazmi, a former close associate of Anna Hazare. Kazmi had recently parted ways with the team alleging that funds were being misappropriated instead of being used for strengthening the Lokpal movement.
“Anna ji is a good man but most of his close associates are cunning,” alleged Kazmi. Not naming anyone in particular, he said, “They are misusing the funds collected by the organizers of the India Against Corruption movement. If anyone conducts a thorough scrutiny of the funds, he will know that there are gross irregularities in the management of public funds.”
A surgeon from Noida, Dr. Sanjeev Chhiber said the following regarding misappropriation of funds,“When I tried to contact him, he did not respond. The medicines used during the fast at Ramlila Maidan were also bought from the funds money. When I urged him to use the same medicines for the poor, they sent back the medicines worth lakhs of rupees back to the suppliers. The members of India Against Corruption (IAC) said they don’t have problems with Anna Hazare and his fight against corruption. They are supporting Anna Hazare, but Kejriwal and Sisodia should be removed from Team Anna.”
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