Tuesday, June 18, 2013

ISKCON Mumbai Misused Bangalore’s Annual Accounts to Aid their Litigation - ICAI

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) in its finding noted that it was clear that ISKCON Mumbai had misused and mis-interpreted the audit reports of ISKCON Bangalore to further their case in the ongoing dispute between ISKCON Mumbai and ISKCON Bangalore. The council which has been established to regulate the profession of chartered accountants gave its finding after hearing response filed by Mr. VL Varadarajan former chartered accountant of ISKCON Bangalore.

It may be recalled that Sri Doyaram Dasa, the legal head and one of the trustees of ISKCON Mumbai had earlier filed a complaint against Mr. V L Varadarajan before the ICAI in 2005. In his complaint Doyaram Dasa had alleged that Varadarajan was guilty of professional misconduct by conniving in fraud by Madhu Pandit Das by modifying ISKCON Mumbai’s branch audit report into ISKCON Bangalore Society’s audit report. The council initially referred the matter to Disciplinary committee of ICAI consisting of five members from the CA fraternity. The disciplinary committee ruled that C.A. V. L. Varadarajan is guilty for issuing anti-dated audit report and balance sheet to ISKCON Bangalore Society and referred the matter to entire council of ICAI consisting of forty members. The council heard contentions of both parties and pronounced it final findings last week.

The council dismissed the complaint of ISKCON Mumbai represented by Doyaram Dasa and held that Mr. Varadarajan was not guilty of misconduct (Annuexure-1, Page 20).

The ICAI, Institute of Chartered Accountants of India is the national professional accounting body of India established in 1949 by an act of parliament to regulate the profession of Chartered Accountancy in India. ICAI is known for maintaining high standards of accounting, auditing and ethics. It enjoys services of very eminent chartered accountants from different parts of the country. It is the second largest professional accounting body in the world.

Misuse of Account documents by ISKCON Mumbai

In its finding ICAI also observed “…It was clear that the annual accounts of the ‘ISKCON Bangalore’ audited by the Respondent(VLV) has been misused and misinterpreted for their internal ongoing legal proceedings between ‘ISKCON Mumbai’ and ‘ISKCON Bangalore’…” The ICAI further found “…that the allegations were a result of inter-dispute between the management of ‘ISKCON Bombay’ and ‘ISKCON Bangalore’. The Council also took into consideration that various litigation proceedings are going on in Courts of law at Bangalore and there was nothing on record to show that the Respondent (VLV) had acted in connivance with the ISKCON functioning at Bangalore.” (Annexure-1, Page 19)

Account Statements veracity questionable

As regards the various account statements of 1991 related to ISKCON Bangalore submitted by ISKCON Mumbai, the ICAI observed that, “The said balance sheet neither had the audit report, alleged to be issued by the Respondent (VLV) nor the schedules which forms part of the Financial Statements…” The Council further noted that “…in the absence of the complete set, the veracity and authenticity of the said document could not be established…” (Annexure-1, page 17)

Account statements do not indicate that ISKCON Bangalore is a branch of ISKCON Mumbai

The Council further noted “…that none of the audit reports annexed to the complaint are in Form 10B or in the format as required to be under BPT and none of the audit reports enclosed to the complaint had a mention of the words ‘Branch’ or ‘ISKCON Bombay’ or ‘ISKCON India’.” (Annexure-1, page 17).

The Council further noted that “…the complainant( ISKCON Mumbai) has not enclosed any branch audit report to establish on record that the respondent ( VLV) had in fact signed the audit report for one of the Branches of 1SKCON India’. However, on perusal of the Audit Reports signed by the Respondent…it has been noted by the Council that the Respondent has addressed the said report to the members of ‘ISKCON Bangalore’ and issued the same to a ‘Society” and not to any branch as the same is not the in the branch format.” (Annexure-1, page 17).

Criminal cases of forgery and conspiracy filed against Doyaram Dasa and two other officers of ISKCON Mumbai 

In relation to the above account statements 1991, ISKCON Bangalore has filed a PCR (No 89/2012 dated 3/8/2012) against Doyaram Dasa, Varada Krishna Dasa and Krishna Bhajan Dasa before Additional Chief Metropolitan magistrate for forgery and conspiracy to aid ISKCON Mumbai to claim ISKCON Bangalore as a branch of ISKCON Mumbai. FIR has been registered under IPC 1860(U/s-417,466,468,469,471,474,120B) by Halasuru police station and investigations are in progress. Varda Krishna Dasa was interrogated by the police. Later Court has granted conditional bail to Varada Krishna dasa of ISKCON Mumbai on his anticipatory bail application. Doyarama Dasa, one of the trustees, President of ISKCON Mumbai’s branch in Calcutta and legal head of ISKCON who figures in the complaint is said to be absconding by the police. Police is slow in taking action and bringing the criminals to justice. Even though the FIR was registered as early as 6/9/2012 (Annexure-2), no tangible progress has been made to bring out the truth from the accused in the complaint. ISKCON Mumbai is using undue political influence to delay the filing of the charge sheet, though the forgery is apparent on the face of records filed with the complaint as explained below.

Background of the criminal complaint of forgery and conspiracy

ISKCON Mumbai in its pleadings before the Civil Court had submitted the 1991 accounts statements related to ISKCON Bangalore. The said financial statements had 8 pages with additional 2 pages (Annexure 3-A) of so-called Annexure to the audit report. Though the accounting statements do not use the word ‘branch’, the Annexure to Audit Report produced by them uses the word ‘Branch’. Also, the said Annexure to Audit Report did not bear the signature of the auditor and seal of auditor’s firm. Whereas the first eight pages have the signature of the auditor and seal of the auditor’s firm. The city civil court also recorded that these this exhibit consisted of total of 10 pages on the deposition of Doyarama Dasa of ISKCON Mumbai (Annexure-3). In the cross-examination of Doyaram Das in the Trial Court, the counsel for ISKCON Bangalore put it to him that the Annexure to audit report of 1991 is a cooked-up document (Annexure 3-B). 

Surprisingly, ISKCON Mumbai added a 3rd page to the 2-page Annexure and filed a complaint before ICAI against the auditor, V. L. Varadaraj claiming that he was the auditor of the branch of ISKCON Mumbai at Bangalore and not of ISKCON Bangalore Society. More interestingly the newly introduced 3rd page was found to have the signature of the then chartered accountant of ISKCON Bangalore Mr. VL Varadarajan. Mr. V.L Varadarajan has denied having signed such a document. Thus, the 11th page (3rd page of the Annexure) bearing the so called signature of V. L. Varadaraj is forged to create authenticity to pages 1 and 2 of the so-called Annexure, which carries a word ‘Branch’. So far ISKCON Mumbai has not produced the original of the 11th page before the police or any court. If it is a genuine document, why is ISKCON Mumbai not producing the original of the 3rd page of the Annexure to the audit report of 1991 either before the police or before ICAI. 

The 11th page was forged and introduced to get a positive order from the Disciplinary Committee of ICAI in February 2011 before the High Court of Karnataka gave its judgment in May 2011 that Madhu Pandit Dasa and V. L. Varadarajan manipulated the documents of branch of ISKCON Mumbai 


Even more astonishing is the fact that ISKCON Mumbai in order to mislead the media circulated in a press conference the same alleged fabricated page on July 8th 2011. What was more preposterous was that this time the third page (Annexure-4) circulated to the media had a civil court seal inspite of the fact that this sheet was never part of the exhibits submitted by ISKCON Mumbai during the legal proceedings in the Trial court or High court. 

Contempt of Court petition filed against ISKCON Mumbai on the introduction of the forged 3rd page of the Annexure:

While filing its reply to the Special Leave Petition filed by ISKCON Bangalore, ISKCON Mumbai had filed a three page annexure to the 1991 account statements in the Supreme Court too. ISKCON Bangalore has filed a contempt petition against Doyarama dasa and other officer bearers of ISKCON Mumbai for trying to mislead the court. The petition is pending before the Honorable Supreme Court.

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