Enforcement directorate attaches Christian medical college funds for cheating – Matters India

Enforcement directorate attaches Christian medical college funds for cheating – Matters India

By Matters India Reporter

Thiruvananthapuram, Nov 24, 2022: A federal agency dealing with economic offenses has attached close to 10 million rupees of movable assets of a Christian medical college in Kerala as part of its probe into a money laundering case.

A November 22 statement from the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) says it has provisionally attached movable properties worth 9,525,000 rupees from the bank balance of Dr Somervell Memorial Medical College, Karakonam, in Thiruvananthapuram district, under the Church of South India.

The amount is equivalent to the amount of funds the officials of the medical college, including a doctor and Bishop Dharmaraj Rasalam, had collected from parents promising to give their children seats in MBBS and masters courses in the institution.

The agency also said it initiated the money laundering investigation on the basis of multiple first information reports registered by Vellarada Police Station and Kerala Police’s Crime Branch.

The probe revealed that the officials had indeed collected the amount from their parents but failed to give admissions to their children even after taking the money.

The accused, ED release points out, had used part of the cash for developing infrastructure in the medical college and the remaining amount was diverted to the parent Organization – the South Kerala Diocese of the Church of South India.

The agency asserts that Bishop Rasalam and Doctor Bennet Abraham, an official of the medical college, took the money through the college, but hadexhausted it. Since the funds collected were unavailable the agency decided to provisionally attach an amount equal from the college account.

Church officials have not responded to the ED action. Earlier diocesan spokesman Father Jayaraj had claimed that the bishop and other officials of the medical college were clean and the probe could vindicate their innocence.

On July 26, the ED detained Bishop Rasalam from Thiruvananthapuram International Airport, as he was about to board a flight to the United Kingdom following suspicion that he was fleeing the country.

Further investigation is in progress, says the ED press release.

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