Hours after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee expressed shock and dismay over the alleged freezing of the accounts of Missionaries of Charity, the organisation came out with a clarification, stating that its accounts were neither frozen, nor suspended.
“We appreciate the concern of our well-wishers and extend our heartiest greetings for Christmas and the New Year. We would like to clarify that the FCRA registration of the Missionaries of Charity has neither been suspended, nor cancelled. Further, there is no freeze ordered by the Ministry of Home Affairs on any of our bank accounts. We have been informed that our FCRA renewal application has not been approved,” the organisation said in a statement.
“Therefore, as a measure to ensure there is no lapse, we have asked our centres not to operate any of the FC accounts until the matter is resolved,” the statement added.
The clarification came after the Ministry of Home Affairs said earlier in the day that the Missionaries of Charity’s application for renewal of FCRA registration was refused on December 25 for not meeting the eligibility conditions, as some adverse inputs were received.
However, the statement signed by Sister M. Prema, Superior General of the missionary body set up by Mother Teresa, did not clarify whether it had asked the State Bank of India to freeze its accounts, as claimed by the Ministry of Home Affairs. The ministry said the SBI had informed that the organisation itself sent a request to the bank to freeze its accounts.
The MHA statement came hours after Mamata Banerjee claimed that the Centre had frozen all bank accounts of the organisation founded by Mother Teresa.
“Shocked to hear that on Christmas, the Union Ministry FROZE ALL BANK ACCOUNTS of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity in India! Their 22,000 patients & employees have been left without food & medicines. While the law is paramount, humanitarian efforts must not be compromised,” Banerjee had tweeted.
Earlier, CPI(M) leader Surya Kanta Mishra had tweeted, “Yesterday, Christmas Day, the Union Ministry FROZE ALL BANK ACCOUNTS of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity. The Govt has frozen all the accounts in India, including cash in hand. Their 22,000 patients, including employees, are left without food and medicines.”
The Missionaries of Charity is a Catholic religious congregation which was established in 1950 by Mother Teresa.