CBI chargesheets six in Preet Mandir adoption racket case

By: Kaumudi Gurjar Date: 2011-03-09 Place: Pune

Investigation agency says it’s detected 75 illegal inter- and intra-country adoptions

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has filed a chargesheet against six accused in the Preet Mandir illegal adoptions case, including three former trustees and a public servant.

Shady activities: Former trustee of Preet Mandir Joginder Bhasin allegedly misappropriated funds to the tune of Rs 47 lakh for personal use.

The six accused are former managing trustee of Preet Mandir Joginder Bhasin (72), his wife Mahinder Bhasin (68), son Gurpreet Singh (43), Superintendent of Vasudev Babaji Navrange Balakashram of Pandharpur Vasudev Gangadhar Darshane (60), social worker associated with Preetmandir’s Kalyaninagar unit Chandrashekar Admane (40) and chairman of Child Adoption Resource Agency (CARA) Janindrakumar Mittal (55).

The city-based foundation allegedly kidnapped children of poor parents and put them up for adoption. They also allegedly extorted huge amounts from adoptive parents as donations.

CBI Inspector from Mumbai’s Special Branch S Bhattacharya through their lawyer Vivek Saxena submitted the 87-page chargesheet before the Special Judge S N Sardesai yesterday.

According to the chargesheet, Bhasin, Darshane and Admane fraudulently obtained rejection slips from one Ramesh Kulkarni for four of his minor children.

The chargesheet said that in other cases, they even forged these slips.

Poor parents can leave their children in the care of Preet Mandir by signing a rejection slip saying they do not have the means to look after them.

The minor children were illegally confined at Sai Dham institute in Kanhe Phata, a rehabilitation centre for distressed women. The children were later allegedly sent for inter- and intra-country adoptions by the six accused, who collected huge amounts from parents based in India and abroad during the adoption process. The CBI has detected at least five such inter-country and 70 intra-country adoptions.

CARA official Mittal gave clearance to the forged rejection slips, said the chargesheet.

The CBI chargesheet said that Bhasin along with his wife and son, misappropriated funds to the tune of Rs 47 lakh for their personal use from 2002 to 2007 for travel and stay in five-star hotels.

The CBI has charged the suspects under various sections of the Indian Penal Code including 120 B (criminal conspiracy) 420 (cheating), 467 and 468 (forgery), 363 (kidnapping), 383 (extortion), 403 (dishonest misappropriation of property), 405 (criminal breach of trust), 471 (falsification of account).

Section 132(2) read with section 13(1) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, have also been pressed against the accused.

A CBI investigation was initiated after writ petitions were filed in the Bombay High Court in 2006 and 2007 demanding investigation into the irregularities at the adoption centre.