The government on Tuesday said it had issued showcause notice to an NGO headed by former Union minister Salman Khurshid in a case of alleged misappropriation of grants meant for the physically handicapped. The government also said an FIR could be registered if required.
In a written reply to the Parliament, social justice and empowerment minister Thaawar Chand Gehlot on Tuesday said NGO Dr Zakir Hussain Memorial Trust had been served with notice and asked why action should not be taken against it.
“A showcause notice has been issued by the ministry to the organisation to explain by July 31 2014 as to why action against the NGO may not be initiated as per rules and the entire amount of grant released to the organisation for 2010-11 along with panel interest should not be recovered, lodging FIR for recovery of entire amount of grant and also blacklisting the organisation,” the minister said.
The trust, which is in the name of Khurshid’s grandfather and India’s third president is a registered NGO in Uttar Pradesh’s Farrukhabad district and chaired by Khurshid and his wife Louise Khurshid, is accused of misuse of government grants worth Rs. 71 lakhs that were meant to provide aids to physically challenged people in UP.
The allegations, which surfaced in a sting carried out by a television news channel in 2012 claimed the NGO forged signatures of government officials to attest that the funds were being used as intended.
Both Khurshid, who was Union law minister then, and his wife had vociferously denied the allegations that surfaced in the sting. Khurshid could not be contacted for his comments on the latest development.