IPSMF Denies Receiving Foreign Funding After IT Survey

Srinagar- The sleuths of Income Tax department on Wednesday searched Bengaluru office of The Independent And Public-Spirited Media Foundation (IPSMF) and recorded statements of senior officials.

Besides Bengaluru, the IT department carried out raids at over 110 locations in Gujarat, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Haryana and some other states against  what it termed “certain registered unrecognised political parties and their alleged dubious financial transactions.”

According to IPSMF, a team of income tax officials visited their Bengaluru office for a ‘survey’ on Wednesday and checked the documents, besides recording statement of the foundation officials. The exercise continued till 4:30 am next day.

The IT sleuths recorded statements of three senior staff members and also took all laptops and mobile phones for cloning data in them. All the gadgets were returned later.

IPSMF said that all their staff were cooperative and answered all questions put to them on a wide range of matters.

The foundation also said that all staff other than the CEO, Sunil Rajshekhar, were allowed to go home at various stages in the evening/night of Wednesday and asked to return the following morning for further questioning.

“The CEO slept in the office for a few hours on the intervening night of September 7-8. The Board of Trustees compliments the staff on their good cheer and fortitude through the extended proceedings,” the foundation said in a statement.

It also said that the IT officials were courteous during their survey work.

Rubbishing some media reports that the IT survey was linked to foreign funding and the funding of political parties, the foundation said that its affairs are entirely in order and has received no foreign funds at any stage, and has funded only media entities.

“The Foundation believes in its mission of supporting independent and public-spirited media, and intends to continue its work,” the handout read.

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