Sad story from Odisha’s Good News India Orphanages and its relation to FCRA

In yet another sad story, this time coming from Odisha, the Director (i.e., the caretaker) of a Child Care Institution (CCI) in Dhenkanal, Odisha has been arrested for allegedly abusing child inmates there. Various mainstream media reports have mentioned the name of the NGO running a string of 22 such CCIs in Odisha region to be ‘Good News India’ (GNI). GNI’s head, Rev. Faiz Rahman too has been taken into custody, according to these news reports. A couple of such news stories are here, here and here.  The total number of children in all these CCIs run by GNI is estimated to be around 3000.

Although the story appeared in mainstream media and various Central Ministers have joined in the outcry against the horrid crime, there has been no public domain report on the funding sources of GNI.

In this short Post, we shall use the publicly available foreign funding resource, made available by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India (we thank the MHA for letting common public use this online resource without RTI) to identify the funding sources of these CCIs. We shall also use the Income Tax Return filed by the foreign organization which funds these CCIs, to the foreign Government (so called Form 990 to be filed by all non-profits to Internal Revenue Service, USA’s income tax agency). Thus, everything that we write here is based on publicly available, online, free resources which can be verified by anyone.

Firstly, a short background on Rev. Faiz Rahman. Rev. Rahman is a Christian Missionary who got attracted to the tenets and practices of Christianity, as a child,  in late 1960s, after he came in contact with another American missionary serving in West Bengal, named Rev. Mark Buntain. For those who may not know, Mark and Huldah Buntain run a Georgia, US based organization called ‘Calcutta Mercy’ which routinely sends funds to the following FCRA-NGOs in Kolkata: Mission of Mercy Hospital and Research Centre (WB/147120200) and The Assembly of God Church (WB/147120043).

Rev. Faiz Rahman runs a non-profit organization in Phoenix, Arizona called ‘Rahman Ministries Inc’ (RMI) whose alias is ‘Good News India’ (GNI-USA). Its Employer Identification Number (EIN) is: 86-1003656

A screenshot extract of its Form 990 (tax return) for the year 2015 is provided below.

Part VII (page 7) of the same form 990 mentions Rev. Faiz Rahman as the President of Good News India (alias Rahman Ministries Inc). For those who may not be aware of terminologies, the word ‘Ministries’ denotes the various ways by which Christian Missionaries serve people. It could be in the form of running Orphanages, Hospitals, Medical Camps, Schools, Skill Training, etc..

Now, which Organization(s) does Rahman Ministries Inc (RMI) support in India? RMI funds, exclusively, a FCRA-NGO called ‘Salgadia Happy and Holy Homes Society (SHHHS)’ in Salgadia, Paschim Medinipur, West Bengal. Its FCRA Registration is: WB/147040452. Although GNI-USA’s website is dysfunctional, that of SHHHS is still functional at https://shhhs.org/ ; SHHHS’ vision is mentioned as : “To transform communities in Eastern India”. Their Mission is described as: “To advance the Kingdom of God via evangelism, church planting, Christian education, distribution of Bibles and Christian literature, child welfare, throughout Eastern India.” Although SHHHS is a pucca Indian registered organization, the web domain of SHHHS.ORG is registered in the name of ‘Good News India, 1220, East Rosemonte Drive, Phoenix, Arizona-85024, USA’. Various property websites provide the owner of the property in this address, and it is not too difficult to guess who it is.

Exactly, how much money did SHHHS receive from RMI and other foreign sources? This can be obtained from the FCRA website of MHA at http://fcraonline.nic.in very easily. The following Table provides the foreign funding inflows to SHHHS since 2006.

Foreign fund inflows via FCRA to SHHHS

Thus, SHHHS has received close to Rs. 81 Crore over the last twelve years with majority funding coming from RMI-Arizona-USA and a small funding coming from GNI-New Zealand. The operations of SHHHS/GNI/RMI are eerily similar to that of Compassion International (whose FCRA was put under Prior Permission route by MHA a couple of years ago). The modus operandi is to let foreign donors ‘adopt’ the maintenance of one particular Indian child in the scores of Orphanages (so-called Dream Centres) of SHHHS.

Who runs SHHHS? Is it Faiz Rahman? We can use the Darpan Portal of Niti-Aayog to identify the Chief Functionaries of SHHHS.


Chief Functionaries of SHHHS as provided in the Darpan Portal of Niti-Aayog

A Tarun Kumar Das is mentioned as Secretary of SHHHS. Indeed, the same Mr. Das signs the annual FC4 return submitted by SHHHS to MHA (as can be seen in the FCRA return).

Note that SHHHS’ achievements as listed in its submission to Niti-Aayog does not mention ‘Ten commandments’, does not mention ‘evangelism’, does not mention ‘church planting’ and so on. Is this subterfuge? Technically, yes, but then hundreds and thousands of similar FCRA-NGOs are doing the same. If you don’t want to believe me on this, it is your loss.

What about Good News India? Is it an Indian organization? GNI is the alias of RMI in the US. However, a FCRA-NGO by the name GNI also exists in India. Precisely in Agrahat, Odisha (PIN: 754028) with FCRA registration number OR/104860151. Does GNI-India receive any money from abroad? Almost nothing. The foreign fund inflows to GNI-Odisha over the years are listed as under.

Who runs GNI-India? Darpan Portal provides the name as a Deepak Kumar Pramanik, who incidentally is the signatory in GNI’s FCRA returns.

Both Deepak Pramanik and Tarun Kumar Das are listed as being part of SHHHS’s Board of Directors on its website.

We have reached the end of this blogpost. To reiterate, all the above information is from public domain, online, freely accessible sources, primarily from Government websites.

What is our position? We assert that FCRA is absolutely not good for our Nation. We assert that the sophisticatedly called ‘Child Care Institutions’ are a cover, in most parts, for such evangelical activities. Our Nation’s laws and Acts have not taken the 4/14 (see wiki) and 10/40 windows (see wiki) of the evangelical faiths into cognizance. Thus, the latter employ FCRA to funnel in loads of cash to further their devious, malignant agenda. India must scrap FCRA and close down at least 90% of its Orphanages summarily and restore the innocent children living there to their parents.

Tailpiece:

(1) While studying about GNI/RMI’s work, we have come across its footprint as far North as Mirik (north of Siliguri). This is certainly *not* Good News for India


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Sad story from Odisha’s Good News India Orphanages and its relation to FCRA

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