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‘Misuse of funds by cultural bodies under probe’

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Sangeet Natak Akademi, Kalakshetra Foundation among named

Five complaints of misutilisation of funds given to cultural organisations by the Centre over the past three years are under investigation, the Culture Ministry told the Lok Sabha recently.

To a question by BJP MP Upendra Singh Rawat, Culture Minister Prahlad Singh Patel presented a list of such cases on December 2.

A case of “misappropriation of funds” in the accounts of the Centre for Cultural Resources and Training (CCRT) in New Delhi was being investigated by the Delhi Police’s Crime Branch, the reply said.

In another case, a complaint had been received about the Ministry’s Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre in Kolkata between 2014 and 2017, the Minister said. The internal audit wing had reported “certain cases of misutilisation” and “further investigation” was under way.

The Ministry had also received a complaint of “lapses in undertaking renovation work of Bharata Kalakshetra Auditorium also called Koothambalam on the premises of Kalakshetra Foundation in Chennai”.

The Central Vigilance Commission had carried out an “intensive examination” and the matter was then referred to the CBI, the Minister said.

Committee formed

A committee had been set up to look into a complaint over the funds allocated to the Sangeet Natak Akademi in Delhi under the scheme for intangible cultural heritage, he said.

“A chargesheet has been filed by the Economic Offences Wing of the Delhi Police in the designated court against two officials of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) for misappropriation of ₹9.63 crore,” the Minister said.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 1:50:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/misuse-of-funds-by-cultural-bodies-under-probe/article30232815.ece

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