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Licypriya Kangujam’s Ketto campaign: A possible violation of FCRA and questionable association with Noble Citizen Foundation

From allegations of faking achievements to a possible violation of FCRA norms while collecting foreign funding in name of COVID relief, the long and short of 'child activist' Licypriya Kangujam and her conman father.

ON May 31, it was reported that the fugitive father of child activist Licypriya Kangujam, Kangujam Kanarjit aka Dr KK Singh, was arrested in a joint operation by Delhi Police and Manipur Police. He is accused of fraud, assault and criminal breach of trust. As per reports, he had duped multiple people with amounts as high as Rs 19 lakh.

It has to be noted that Licypriya has raised her voice for several campaigns in the past which are not even related to her activism. The child activist’s Twitter account is run by her guardian and earlier it stated it was her father.

Several questionable remarks and the use of photographs available in a public forum to assert her agenda and campaigns have raised eyebrows in the past. She is currently running a campaign to collect money so that she can help Covid-19 patients on Ketto. As OpIndia have found some discrepancies in the past in similar campaigns where FCRA regulations were not followed, we decided to look into her campaign as well.

FCRA regulations not followed

The first thing that we noticed in her campaign that as usual there was no respect for the regulations laid down by the Government of India while accepting foreign donations. In the fundraiser, where Licypriya has raised over Rs 75 lakh so far, we found many foreign donations. As There were 2709 donors listed by the time we published the report, it was decided to check the top hundred most generous donations.

Screenshot of Ketto campaign by Licypriya. Source: Ketto

There were 66 foreign donations in the top hundred most generous donations. The amount she had collected the foreign donations included USD 31720 (Rs.23,08,365.53), EUR 1484 (Rs.1,32,062.63), GBP 1220 (Rs. 1,26,326.20) and SGD 250 (13,785.03). It makes a total of Rs.25,80,539.39 as per today’s exchange rates. [We used XE.com to convert different currencies to Indian Rupees. All calculations were done on June 1, 2021.]

Top 25 most generous donations on Ketto. Source: Ketto

It has to be noted that as she is a minor, she has been withdrawing money in her mother’s name from Ketto.

In her campaign, she mentioned an organization named Noble Citizen Foundation and claimed that she transferred the money to this organization to procure oxygen concentrators from China. Noble Citizen Foundation then used one MH Traders Co. located in Delhi that deals in import and export to import oxygen concentrators. So far, everything appears alright but the problem started when we tried to dig more into Noble Citizen Foundation.

As per the organization’s website, it is located in New Delhi. It is registered as a Non-government company in August 2020. It has to be noted that according to Section 8, Companies Act 2013, a company can be registered to promote sports, commerce, art, science, education, research, social welfare, religion, charity, and protection of the environment or any such other object. In such companies the profit, if any, is used in promoting the objective. It prohibits paying any dividend to its members. Such companies do not need to add any suffix such as Pvt. Ltd. or Ltd. in the name.

OpIndia consulted Sandeep Kanoi, founder Taxguru, who said that in any case, to receive foreign funding they have to register for FCRA. In this case, Noble Citizen Foundation is possibly breaking the law by accepting foreign funds collected by Licypriya.

Under FCRA 2010, such companies are eligible to get FCRA certification in case they want to accept foreign funding. We tried to find if they have FCRA certificate, but we could not find their name in the list of organizations that have obtained FCRA certificate in 2020 and 2021 on the FCRA website. Even on its website, there was no information on their FCRA account. However, on the donation page, they have written that if anyone wants to donate to the organization from outside India, the person can mail to a specific mail ID. We have emailed them and asked about the process they are using to accept the foreign donation.

Noble Citizen Foundation has asked to contact them in case someone from outside wants to donate. Source: NCF website

Updates missing from Ketto fundraiser

There is one update that Licypriya shared on her social media accounts that are missing from the Ketto fundraiser. As it is related to the purchases they have been making, it is unclear why they did not share it on Ketto. In the update, she shared details of a fund transfer that they made to one Guangzhou Minicky Trading Co Ltd in China amounting to USD 15150. It also mentioned that the total contract with the said company was USD 50500.

The information of the transfer is missing from Ketto fundraiser page

It has to be noted that on Ketto, Licypriya had shared Proforma Invoice in which a company named Shenzhen Xishi Trading Co Ltd had shared estimate for the oxygen concentrators.

Shenzhen Xishi Trading Co Ltd’s proforma invoice is available on Ketto fundraiser page

The details of funds transferred to Guangzhou Minicky Trading Co Ltd are not only missing from the Ketto page but the details of any such transfer is also not available in the account statement they had shared on Ketto. The amount should be close to Rs.11 lakh but there were no transfers between May 8 to May 12 anywhere close to that amount. There was one transaction close to the amount but that done on May 17 to MH Traders Co.

Notably, the address of Guangzhou Minicky Trading Co Ltd is also different from what we could find online. Also, the company deals in toys, clothes etc. It is unclear why she transferred such an amount to a company that possibly do not even deal in oxygen concentrators.

Information available on Guangzhou Minicky Trading Co Ltd

MH Trader Co has little to no information available

MH Trader Co, the firm with which Noble Citizen Foundation had very little information available online. From the details available, it is unclear if they import medical equipment or not. There were no contact details available either from where we could get more information about the firm.

MH Trading Co has very little information available online. No contact information could be obtained.

Licypriya Kangujam and Noble Citizen Foundation

When we tried to find a connection between Licypriya and Noble Citizen Foundation, we noted that the founder of the organization and Licypriya knew each other for years. In one of the tweets from February 2020, Sahil calls her his Mentee. Interestingly, the tweet has now been deleted.

Sahil has been deleting tweets since KK Singh’s arrest

Notably, Sahil has also travelled with Licypriya’s father in 2019. There was a tweet in which he had shared photos with KK Singh but the tweet has now been deleted as well. In the tweet he had written, “Every day is a new adventure in this country. The challenges here have toughened its people and yet the heart here know compassion and love. I am proud to call this country my home. Motherland Wonderful ride with KK Singh Sir, Chairman IYC”. It looks like since Singh’s arrest, Sahil has been trying to cover his tracks on Twitter.

Now-deleted tweet in which Sahil was seen travelling with KK Singh

Noble Citizen Foundation’s address mismatch on invoice and website

When we looked at the address of Noble Citizen Foundation, the address available on website is different from the address mentioned on the invoice.

Address mismatch of Noble Citizen Foundation

Similar questions have been raised earlier by a twitter user Herin and The Frontier Manipur which can be checked here and here. Sahil’s attempt to remove evidence of connection to KK Singh, previous questions raised on the father-daughter duo and inconsistent information available on the fundraiser and possible FCRA violations have raised several questions on Licypriya and Noble Citizen Foundation that they need to answer.

OpIndia had earlier curated how her father took everyone for a ride by conning them. There were also reports of Licypriya herself faking her achievements to gain popularity.

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Anurag
Anurag
B.Sc. Multimedia, a journalist by profession.

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