An educationist alleged a medical trust of senior Congress leader Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil had received Rs. 2 crore in donation from controversial preacher Zakir Naik’s now proscribed NGO Islamic Research Foundation.
Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, the Leader of Opposition in the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly, is the vice-chairman of Pravara Medical Trust (PMT).
Interestingly, the allegation was made by his elder brother cum educationist Ashok Vikhe Patil.
“Zakir Naik’s IRF has given donation of Rs. two crore to Pravara Medical Trust and this fact came to the fore during the investigation by the Enforcement Directorate (ED). Giving donation is not illegal, but it is up to the recipients conscience whether to accept it or not,” Ashok said while addressing a press conference at Vikhe Patil School.
Meanwhile, Radhakrishna has admitted that a medical college run by his Trust had received “some funds” from Naik’s IRF, which is currently banned under the UAPA Act.
“I am one of the trustees and my (another) brother Rajendra looks after the daily functioning of the Trust. He (Rajendra) told me that IRF was one of the trusts that had given some funds to PMT. And it was for social cause, which we have utilised accordingly. Our education and other facilities to students are subsidised and like other funds, IRFs funds were also utilised for the same cause,” he told.
Radhakrishna said the PMT had all receipts of the funds received and have paid due taxes. “We can produce (receipts) if demanded,” he said.
On the allegations, Radhakrishna said, “I am a bit hurt with my brother Ashok’s statements against me and the organisation. I don’t want to say more about the issue, as it is a bit personal matter as well.”
Naik, the controversial Islamic preacher and tele-Evangelist, is under the scanner of the Enforcement Directorate for alleged money laundering.
The Centre had last November banned his Mumbai-based NGO for five years under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) had served a notice to Naik, currently abroad, asking him to join investigation under UAPA at its headquarters.