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J&K flood relief funds 'manipulated', 'diverted'
Startling revelations
12/8/2016 10:45:15 PM
Early Times Report
JAMMU, Dec 8: The audit of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) brings out more skeletons from the cupboard of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) for misappropriation of funds and manipulating funds collected for relief for the Kashmir flood victims. The Vice Chancellor (VC) Lt.(Retd.) Gen. Zameer uddin Shah caught for violating Customs rules by collecting and improper management of huge cash and jeweilarey abroad during his visits.
The CAG findings has pointed out many gross violations of VC and Pro VC in its Audit Report in matters relating to appointments, overlooking the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), University Grants Commission (UGC), AMU Account Code, Statutes, Ordinances of AMU, particularly Finance. The report of nearly a hundred pages lists 58 violations amounting to nearly Rs. 120 crores ($17.9 million) in the financial year 2014-15.
Para 52, Page 88 of the findings says "….leading to arbitrary decisions by the Vice- Chancellor and Pro Vice Chancellor……the one day salary donated by University Teachers to AMU Teachers Association for Kashmir Relief Fund was not released to them even after repeated requests but was transferred to the accounts of some private individuals…." along with the funds realized on account of Sir Syed day celebrations of 2014 by AMU students.
The students' money of Rs.51,78,634 ($77,000) has been transferred to a private Trust, namely Sir Syed Educational Foundation of which the present VC is the lifetime trustee in his personal capacity. The report further emphasizes that this action was in gross violation of the "AMU Act, Account Code and Government of India Finance Rules" and is a clear-cut case of misuse of University money.
Such activity of the present VC, opines the AMU fraternity, indicates the possible nexus between the VC and the private trust. They are also much moved by the inhuman behaviour of the VC that deprived the needy Kashmiri flood victims of their life-saving emergency benefits at the time of natural calamity.
The University has evaded replying to all the three reminders issued in January 2016 by the CAG, in this connection till date.
The Vice Chancellor Lt.(Retd.) Gen. Zameer Uddin Shah has been accused by the CAG of violating the Customs and Excise tax. Office of the Principal Director of Audit (Central) Lucknow has mentioned in his report 2012-2015 that, the AMU VC has brought cash jewellery and precious stones from abroad without submitting to the Dept of Customs and Excise.
The alumni of AMU living outside India had donated enormously in the form of cash precious stones and jewellery for many purposes to AMU through the present VC since 2012. The donated articles brought to India were auctioned and their proceeds were to have been utilized in the AMU. The CAG has reported that VC has violated the rules of customs and excise in bringing these articles to India.
The CAG reports says "…that these items were brought to the country by the VC without any declaration by the AMU authorities to the Dept of Customs and Excise. Even no proper valuation by Govt approved valuers was done".
This was done without following proper due procedure, the CAG said. An Audit memo and subsequently three remainders in January 2016 were sent but the University has evaded replying them.
"In view of non reply by the AMU without any cogent reasons and non production of relevant records. ..it seems to be a clear cut case of gross violation of Customs and Excise Act, Reserve Bank guidelines, and other relevant act as also government finance rules and also Act Statutes, Ordinances and Account Code of AMU", the CAG reported.
Will the Union HRD Ministry and possibly the CBI act against the AMU as suggested by the CAG? Or will it forgive in the name of so called secularism? Wasn't Prime Minister (PM) Modi's election call "development for all and appeasement of none?"
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