New Delhi: Sentencing a doctor to seven years in jail for siphoning off a part of WHO funds meant for leprosy eradication programme in India two decades ago, a Delhi court has directed that all property purchased by him with that money be used for running asylum for lepers.
Special CBI judge V K Maheshwari handed down seven-year jail term to Dr Baij Nath Mittal, 73, ex-director general (leprosy) in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, and slapped a fine of Rs six lakh on him after finding him guilty of misappropriating Rs 1.46 crore of funds given by World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF for work relating to eradication of Leprosy in India during 1991-93.
"This act of convict has tarnished image of India in the international community," the court said.
Under Mittal, Rs 4.42 crore were recived from WHO and UNICEF for eradication of leprosy in India.
He, along with his accomplice Mukesh Kumar Gupta, a statistical assistant in the ministry and Krishan Chand Gupta, a head cashier in the State Bank of Mysore, transferred Rs 1.46 crore out of the fund into fictitious bank accounts.
The court noted that with the misappropriated fund Mittal had purchased a flat in DLF Gurgaon, a property in CR Park in his name and other properties in the name of his wife and his two sons.
"As these properties were purchased by accused B N Mittal misappropriating the funds received for leprosy eradication programmes hence these properties be used for running asylum for lepers.
"Convict B N Mittal, his wife Dr Krishna Mittal and his sons Amit Mittal and Deepak Mittal are directed not to sale, alienate, transfer, mortgage or dispose of such properties in their name," the court said.