Kashmir’s Oldest Missionary School Faces Charges of Corruption and Embezzlement
The litigants claimed that the order, which was effected in April 1993, has been used as a tool to give shape to the 'misdeeds of withdrawing unaudited crores of rupees by way of labelling the sums as basic salary, cost of living, honorarium, travel allowance, medical expenses overtime etc'.
Tyndale-Biscoe School. (Image: Twitter)
Srinagar: One of the oldest and topmost schools in Jammu and Kashmir has come under the scanner for massive misappropriation of funds after a local court directed the state crime branch to launch a “fresh probe” against it.
The action against the Tyndale-Biscoe and Mallinson School came in response to a complaint filed by Rajan Sadhu, its former estates supervisor, and Issac Samuel, a member of the Saints Paul’s Church. The duo approached the Srinagar chief judicial magistrate with a complaint to probe the cases of “corruption and misappropriation” in the school.
The Tyndale-Biscoe School for boys was set up in 1880. The girls’ wing, the Mallinson School, was established in 1912. They are governed by the diocese of Amritsar. The society runs many other schools, including the Kashmir Valley School in Budgam and the Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson School in Tangmarg in north Kashmir.
The complainants have accused the school authorities of bringing harm to the institution by resorting to illegal and corrupt practices. Those named include Pradeep Kumar Samantaroy, chairman of joint management committee and the bishop of the diocese of Amritsar, Parvez Samuel Koul, principal and director of the Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson School, Joyce Kaul, headmistress of Mallinson School and The Kashmir Valley School, Rahul Rex Kaul, administrator of Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson School, and Vijendara Dhanvantri, chief accounts officer of Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson School and its accounts and estates officer.
The complaint has indicated grave accusations against Parvez Samuel Koul and Joyce Samuel Koul, who are married to each other, and their son Rahul Rex Koul.
In its order (a copy of which is with News18), the court directed the Senior Superintendent of Police of the Crime Branch to submit a fresh report by March 30 in light of the complainants’ application dated December 28 last year.
The litigants have accused Parvez Samuel Koul of abusing his authority by securing another appointment in the same post. “Tyndale Biscoe principal and his wife, who is the principal of Mallinson School, have both exceeded their age limit for holding the office, according to the amended rules of the Diocese of Amritsar Church. This shows their abuse of law governing the society,” they said.
The litigants claimed that the order, which was effected in April 1993, has been used as a tool to give shape to the “misdeeds of withdrawing unaudited crores of rupees by way of labelling the sums as basic salary, cost of living, honorarium, travel allowance, medical expenses overtime etc”.
The litigants have accused the authorities of converting the society’s assets into personal ones. “The illegal conversion of society assets into personal assets needs a thorough investigation. As in the case of Tyndale Biscoe and Mallinson School Tangmarg, spread across an area of 19 kanals of land, 12 kanals have been purchased in the name of Parvez Koul and seven kanals in the name of Joyce Kaul, using the money of the society as reflected in the book accounts,” they said. One kanal of land is equivalent to around 505 square metres.
The litigants claim that the accused covertly and illegally encroached upon the society’s assets. The school’s sister concern, The Kashmir Valley School in Budgam, was gutted in a fire in 2010. The then Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram had released a sum of Rs 1 crore for the school.
“That the accused Rahul Kaul and Vijayendra Dhanvantri were in league with the principal and others, due to which they have illegally and without justification tried to cover up the illegal withdrawal of funds and illegal conversion of assets. The accused Koul and his wife transferred society funds to themselves in the name of over duty, transportation charges and other expenses, which tune to crores of rupees,” said the complaint.
The litigants also accused the two principals and their son of transferring society vehicles into their own properties. “These schools have been illegally hijacked by one single family, which is deliberately trying to change the basic structure of the diocese-run educational institutes, viciously turning them from an educational society into their personal business enterprises and parents, casting a wrong impression that diocese was imparting education in conflict,” they said.
The complaint accused the bishop of the Amritsar diocese of blatantly refusing to act in a lawful manner. His actions had deeply compromised his authority and had led to a change in the basic structure of the educational society in dispute, they said. “He is equally capable for going against the law and deriving unlawful considerations from the accused jointly,” the litigants claimed.
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