The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) raided activist Teesta Setalvad's home and office on Tuesday morning. Setalvad has been accused of illegally receiving funds from abroad, and the CBI registered a case against her last week.
"We are surprised and shocked at this," Teesta said, who was at her Juhu home when the CBI officers conducted the raid. "We have been offering full cooperation."
According to reports, a team of 16 CBI officers carried out these raids in Mumbai, despite Setalvad assuring her full cooperation with the CBI probe in a written declaration to the investigating agency. She had written to them assuring she would furnish any documents they need from her.
Setalvad, along with her husband Javed Anand and Gulam Mohammed Peshimam, both directors in Sabrang Communications and Publishing based in Santacruz in Mumbai, have been accused of violating the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act as they had accepted funds from abroad without taking prior permission from the Home Ministry.
Setalvad is the secretary of Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP), which works for bringing justice to survivors of the 2002 communal riots in Gujarat. She is also a co-petitioner in seeking criminal trial against Narendra Modi and 62 other politicians and government officials alleging their complicity in the violent riots that killed hundreds of people.
The petition will be heard before a magistrate's court in Ahmedabad on July 27.
"This is vendetta by the BJP. They are trying to humiliate us," she told NDTV.
The raids were also conducted in the homes of Anand, and Peshimam, as well as their office in Santacruz.
Her(Teesta Setalwad) allegations will certainly be looked into during investigation-Kanchan Prasad,CBI Spokesperson pic.twitter.com/L3lfhQV8kq— ANI (@ANI_news) July 14, 2015
The case registered against them last week is under the Indian Penal Code or IPC section related to criminal conspiracy (120-B) along with provisions of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010 and Foreign Contribution
Regulation Act, 1976.
Setalvad told PTI that she didn't understand the "rationale" behind the raids.
"We believe that it is a caged-parrot in operation and its a political vendetta and they are trying to humiliate and intimidate us," she said, noting "the team here is very professional but we don't know where it will end".
CBI sources said in New Delhi that the case was registered after the agency completed verification of all the documents submitted by the home ministry while referring the probe to the agency.
They said it is alleged that the accused named in the FIR, in a criminal conspiracy, accepted foreign contribution without registration and prior permission from the Union home ministry as mandated under FCRA norms.
Earlier, the Gujarat police has accused her of embezzling funds meant for a riots museum, and she had been granted anticipatory bail by the Supreme Court.
(with PTI inputs)