Trustee demands CBI probe into Roerich Memorial Trust

Shimla: With stolen Roerich paintings from India reportedly have been auctioned at London, a life trustee member of International Roerich Memorial Trust (IMRT) has demanded a CBI probe into working of the trust.

In a hard hitting letter to chief secretary Himachal Pradesh Government, Rajwant Sandhu, a life trustee of IMRT, Shakti Chandel has expressed apprehension about several artifacts connected with the Roerich’s art gallery at Naggar going missing.

Asking the chief secretary to convene an early meeting of the trust, Chandel says that officials and trustees have made a mess of IRMT as the trust was not functioning in accordance with Trust Act of India that had no provision for taking on board anyone as a trustee who was living abroad.

The trust left behind by Dr Svetoslav Roerich and his wife Devika Rani is unable to attain any of the goals for which it was created, he said.

He points out that instead of acting against objections raised by him, Russian Ambassador to India, Alexander M. Kadakin, who is also a IRMT trustee, had limited his concern to defending interests of an Czech employee and not that of the trust.

Having lodged complaint about working of the trust with chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal and with Director General Police of Himachal about violations under Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), Chandel has asked the chief secretary to convene a meeting of India trustees and sought a CBI probe into its functioning for the state agency has constraints.


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