Religious hatred, conversion and illegal foreign funding: FCRA license of ‘Jesus Redeems’ suspended

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs has decided to suspend the FCRA license of Tamil Nadu-based Jesus Redeems, a contentious Christian missionary organisation led by Mohan C Lazarus. This action follows a complaint lodged in November 2023 by the Legal Rights Protection Forum (LRPF), a legal activist group, accusing the outfit of severe breaches of the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).

LRPF has highlighted that Mohan C Lazarus and his entity, Jesus Redeems, violated provisions of the FCRA, 2010, warranting the suspension or cancellation of their FCRA registration. This is due to illegality in funds received by the group. Lazarus is also accused of disrupting communal harmony through provocative speeches and engaging in proselytization activities.

Mohan C Lazarus operates a Christian organisation called Jesus Redeems, through which he conducts religious proselytization activities. He has gained notoriety for allegedly disrupting communal harmony by making anti-Hindu statements. Numerous First Information Reports (FIRs) have been filed against him in various police stations across Tamil Nadu. These FIRs cite sections 153, 153-A(1)(a) & (b), 295-A, 505(1)(b), and 505(2) of the Indian Penal Code. The allegations stem from statements made against Hindu temples and deities during large religious gatherings.

‘Jesus Redeems’ is a registered Christian religious organisation operating in Tamil Nadu under the Indian Trusts Act of 1882, and holds FCRA registration number 076160018. Its founder and signatory authority, Mohan Lazarus, also known as Mohan C. Lazarus, serves as the Chief Executive Officer of a US-registered Public Charity organization named ‘Jesus Redeems Ministries Inc.’

A central allegation revolves around recent amendments to the FCRA rules, explicitly stating that the Chief Functionary of the recipient Indian organisation should not be affiliated with the donor organisation. Allegedly, ‘Jesus Redeems’ has received substantial foreign contributions from ‘Jesus Redeems Ministries Inc., (US),’ a significant foreign donor.

The LRPF said in its complaint, “The act of Mohan Lazarus alias Mohan C. Lazarus as a Chief Functionary to the ‘Jesus Redeems’ attracts the various sections of the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act, 2010 which amounts to suspension/cancellation of the FCRA registration of the said organisation: Chapter II, 9 (e) (v): causing, disharmony between religious, racial, social, linguistic or regional groups, castes or communities. Chapter III. 12 (4) (f) (vi): causing disharmony between religious, racial, social, linguistic or regional groups, castes or communities.”

Jesus Redeems also received funds from an American organisation named Compassion International (USA) directly and through a Chennai-based NGO Caruna Bal Vikas. This is a violation because the Indian government has prohibited Compassion International (US) from donating to Indian NGOs due to various controversies involving child conversion and fundraising through child sponsorship schemes globally and in India. As a result, Compassion International closed its Indian operations in 2017, after the govt refused to consider the ban.

However, as per LRPF, between 2009 and 2015, Compassion International sent over ₹1.5 crore to Caruna Bal Vikas, and this money was diverted to Jesus Redeems. After the American Christian charity was banned in India, it started donating directly to the FCRA-designated bank account of Jesus Redeems, and an amount of ₹1.13 crore. This shows that Jesus Redeems is the primary affiliate of Compassion International, which is banned from operating in India.

The LRPF further urged the Ministry of Home Affairs to conduct an inquiry into the status of the official magazine of ‘Jesus Redeems,’ published by Mohan C. Lazarus. Additionally, it alleged that the organisation operates in numerous other countries, such as the United States, Australia, Dubai, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, Canada, and Sri Lanka.

The complaint highlighted that ‘Jesus Redeems’ consistently hosts Christian religious events overseas and extends invitations to pastors from various nations, including China. The LRPF emphasised the need to investigate whether the expenses incurred for these events are properly documented in the organisation’s audit reports.

‘Jesus Redeems’ also reportedly received substantial foreign funding from directors associated with the DANGOTE Group, a mining conglomerate headquartered in Nigeria, known for its close ties with Sinoma International Engineering Co. Ltd, a Chinese state-owned and state-administered company.

Sinoma International Engineering Co., Ltd. is a notable affiliate of China National Building Materials Group Co., Ltd., operating under the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission of the State Council (SASAC). Nigeria has shifted its primary trading partner status from the United States of America to China. Under a significant agreement, a Chinese state-owned company, Sinoma International Engineering Co., Ltd., has secured a deal valued at $4.3 billion (£2.8 billion) to construct factories for a Nigerian cement firm owned by the Dangote Group.

The complaint further highlighted from the FCRA return filed by Jesus Redeems that it received a sum of ₹3,71,154 from an individual named Shirly Rohan, whose residential address is in Bangalore. It requests clarification regarding the basis for accepting donations into the FCRA account from Indian residents.

Source: OpIndia

Leave a Comment

Notice : The source URLs cited in the news/article might be only valid on the date the news/article was published. Most of them may become invalid from a day to a few months later. When a URL fails to work, you may go to the top level of the sources website and search for the news/article.

Disclaimer : The news/article published are collected from various sources and responsibility of news/article lies solely on the source itself. Hindu Janajagruti Samiti (HJS) or its website is not in anyway connected nor it is responsible for the news/article content presented here. ​Opinions expressed in this article are the authors personal opinions. Information, facts or opinions shared by the Author do not reflect the views of HJS and HJS is not responsible or liable for the same. The Author is responsible for accuracy, completeness, suitability and validity of any information in this article. ​