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Kerala: CBI questions CEO of ‘Life Mission’ in Red Crescent Deal

MUMBAI – CBI on Monday questioned U V Jose, CEO of the ‘Life Mission’, a state housing project envisaging total housing for the homeless, in connection with the alleged violation of Foreign Contribution (Regulations) Act. Jose, who was summoned by the CBI, appeared before the investigation team on Monday morning.

He was let off in the evening, sources said.

The CBI had filed an FIR in a court here under Section 120 B of the IPC and Section 35 of the Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010 on a complaint by Wadakkanchery Congress MLA Anil Akkara, listing Santosh Eappen, Managing Director of Unitac Builder, Kochi, as the first accused and Sane Ventures as the second accused.

The Kerala government has moved the High Court, seeking quashing of an FIR filed by the CBI, naming Life Mission for alleged violation of FCRA.

The Life Mission CEO, in his petition, has submitted that the FIR was “illegal, arbitrary and nothing but an abuse of the process of law and is, therefore, liable to be quashed”.

The alleged FCRA violation and corruption in the project has snowballed into a major political issue with opposition parties alleging that Swapna Suresh, a key accused in the gold smuggling case, had admitted before an NIA court that she had received Rs 1 crore as commission from the project.

Red Crescent, an international humanitarian movement, had agreed to provide Rs 20 crore towards the Life Mission project. The opposition has alleged that there was corruption involved in the selection of the contractor by Red Crescent.  

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