Preet Mandir adoption racket: 3 accused file discharge pleas

‘the court is likely to pass an order on the discharge

7 August 2012

The main accused in the adoption racket case, Joginder Singh Bhasin (72), his wife Mahinder (68) and son Gurpreet (43) have filed pleas before the CBI special court of D R Mahajan seeking discharge from the charges of running an illegal adoption racket at Preet Mandir.
Bhasin was the managing trustee of Balwant Kartar Anand Foundation that runs the adoption home and Mahinder and Gurpreet were trustees when the alleged criminal activities took place.

According to the chargesheet filed by CBI officials in March 2011, the trio allegedly misappropriated funds to the tune of Rs 47 lakh for their personal use from 2002 to 2007 for travelling, staying in five-star hotels and buying luxury goods. The accused have been charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code including 120 B (criminal conspiracy), 420 (cheating), 467 and 468 (forgery), 363 (kidnapping), 383 (extortion), 403 (misappropriation of property), 405 (criminal breach of trust), 471 (falsification of account), along with Section 132(2) read with Section 13 (1) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.

Bhasin, Gurpreet and Mahinder have sought discharge from all these charges, opposed by CBI special prosecutor Vivek Saxena. “The court is likely to pass an order on the discharge pleas on Wednesday,” Saxena said.

Other than these three, the CBI had also chargesheeted superintendent of Vasudev Babaji Navrange Balakashram of Pandharpur Vasudev Gangadhar Darshane (60), social worker associated with Preet Mandir’s Kalyaninagar unit Chandrashekar Admane (40) and chairman of Child Adoption Resource Agency (CARA) Janindrakumar Mittal (55).

According to CBI, Bhasin, Darshane and Admane fraudulently obtained rejection slips from Ramesh Kulkarni pertaining to his four minor children, while in other cases, even forged these slips. As per the chargesheet, CARA official Mittal had approved the forged rejection slips. The CBI has detected at least five such inter-country and 70 intra-country adoptions. The CBI had taken over the case on directions of the Bombay High Court after writ petitions were filed in 2006 and 2007, demanding investigation into the irregularities at the adoption centre.