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US-Based Pak NGOs ‘Mop Up’ Funds Raised To Help India With Covid-19 Crisis, Likely To Be Used To Finance Terrorism, Report Says – Times of India

WASHINGTON: Charities based in the United States and linked to Pakistan have raised funds in the name of helping India in the Covid-19 crisis, however, the millions of dollars donated are likely to be used for “To instigate protests and sponsor outright terrorist attacks,” according to a report.
In an elaborate report, DisInfo Lab uncovered the “Covid-19 Scam 2021”, which it said is “one of the worst scams in human history” in terms of humanitarian cost, as millions of dollars were stolen in the name of ‘Helping India Souffle’.
As India witnessed a devastating second wave of Covid-19 cases, help came from around the world. However, some organizations are taking advantage of the crisis to illegitimately fundraise in the name of charity.
The DisInfo Lab exhibited several charities, which have been successful in raising funds by harnessing India’s hard-earned goodwill.
These organizations have close ties to radical Islamists and terrorist organizations and are run in cahoots with the Pakistan army.
One such Islamic organization is the IMANA-Islamic Medical Association of North America “Funds worth tens of crores donated by well-meaning people around the world to help India in crisis – have been stolen. There is no accountability and in today’s globalized world, no mechanism to ensure any accountability, ”the report said.
The Islamic Medical Association of North America (IMANA) is an Illinois-based medical relief organization that was officially established as the Islamic Medical Association (IMA) in 1967, and subsequently renamed IMANA.
Unlike several other organizations, IMANA was rather opaque in its recent charity campaign during the Covid crisis and provided “few details” on how it spent the millions of funds it raised.
The current president of IMANA is Dr Ismail Mehr, who led the “Help India Breathe” project.
IMANA created a buzz last month with its fundraiser. He launched the #HelpIndiaBreathe campaign on Instagram on April 27, 2021 and set an initial goal of 1.8 crore.
It is important to note that IMANA does not have an office, brand or representative in India. However, that did not stop them from organizing an aggressive fundraiser in the name of aid to India.
According to the Disinfo Lab report, IMANA received huge amounts in a short period of time and frequently revised the target amount as soon as the previous goal was met.
According to DisInfo Lab’s calculations based on the funds they raised during the specific time period, there was a time when they received donations at a rate of $ 100,000 per hour. The total amount, according to calculations, can be anywhere between Rs.30 crore to Rs.158 crore. DisInfo Lab said: “Since IMANA has almost no transparency on the funds it has raised, there is no way to determine the actual amount it might have received.”
During several interviews, Dr Ismail Mehr of IMANA made several questionable statements. He said he purchased medical supplies worth $ 800,000 on May 7, including 100,000 nasal cannulas, 40,000 non-respiratory masks and 450 oxygen concentrators. He never reached India.
They also claimed to have bonded with Air India for free delivery to Delhi. Another claim said that they had developed a network of people and organizations working on the ground which included Hindus and Sikh volunteers. Another claim suggested they linked up with India DRDO and the Ministry of Agriculture.
None of these claims could be verified from the information available in open source. In addition, it is highly unlikely that organizations like DRDO will partner with a United States-based organization with members of Pakistani descent for any relief work in India or even help them coordinate with people on the ground. .
IMANA was not the only organization to organize fundraisers under the pretext of helping India. DisInfo Lab found at least 66 such campaigns on a single platform, Launch Good. says DisInfo Lab.
The organizations “cleaned up” the crucial fund at a critical time that could have saved lives and “harnessed” the goodwill that India and Indians have gained around the world, according to the report.
“Some of the major organizations that have raised funds on Launch Good include ICNA Relief Canada, Human Concern International (Canada), Helping Hand for Relief and Development (HHRD) and Islamic Relief UK,” the report says.
Helping Hand for Relief and Development USA (HHRD) is the international front of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) Relief USA. HHRD and ICNA are self-identified US Jamaat-e-Islami (Jel) charities based in Pakistan.
According to DisInfo Lab, in December 2017, HHRD hosted a conference in Pakistan. Other organizations sponsoring the event included the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation, the charitable wing of Pakistani terrorist organization Lashkar-e-Taiba.
Several organizations with questionable track records and without FCRA approval have campaigned and raised funds. There were about 23 such organizations and they managed to raise over US $ 1.2 million through small fundraisers.
ISNA and IMANA are said to have links with terrorist organizations around the world. ISNA reportedly provided funds to Hamas. They provided funds to the Al-Khidmat Foundation, which is the “charitable wing” of JeI that funded Hamas.
IMANA is also supporting Al-Mustafa Welfare Trust (AMT), which is part of Pakistan’s military capital, Milbus. It is issued for the personal benefit of the Then Military brotherhood. It is run by retirees from the army, navy and air force.
“Funds worth tens of crores donated by well-meaning people around the world to help India in crisis – have been stolen. There is no accountability and in today’s globalized world, no mechanism to ensure any responsibility, “the report says.
“Funds that, in good hands, would have saved so many lives. What is most tragic about the whole episode is that several of these organizations did not intend to give even token aid for start, ”he added.
All this “farce” pulled by the so-called charities was not just financial fraud but was a crime against humanity on many levels, according to the report.
The Dis Info lab suggested that governments – from the United States to India – should take note of the terrorist financing mechanism and provide a mechanism to ensure transparency for these groups.
It is worth mentioning that the FATF has already raised this concern that a large part of the funding on behalf of Covid is likely to go to terrorist financing. Given the breadth of the network of a range of organizations, the scale of the total financing of terrorism could only be imagined, the report reads.




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