Sunday, May 3, 2015

Instruction to all the NGOs regarding FCRA letters/envelops


Friends, please note the following communication from MHA; while sending any document to FCRA wing please follow the same.

How to get Income Tax permission for Indian NGOs to work for the‪ Earthquake‬ affected in ‪‎Nepal‬:

Indian ‪‎NGOs can now seek permission u/s 11(1)(c) of the Income-tax Act, 1961 for rendering help to the victims of Nepal Earthquake. The IT dept will endeavour to process applications within 2 working days of receiving completed applications.

India certified NGOs should find it relatively easy to submit required documents.

The applications seeking approval u/s 11(1)(c) may be submitted in the office of Member(IT), Central Board of Direct Taxes, Department of Revenue, Ministry of Finance, North Block, New Delhi.
A list of documents to be annexed with the application is given below.
Document required to be furnished while seeking exemption u/s 11(1)(c) of the Income-tax Act, 1961
1. Certified Copies of Trust Deed, Articles of Association, Memorandum of Association (as applicable) and PAN Card
2. Copy of order granting registration u/s 12AA of the Income Tax Act
3. Amount in INR and year in which it is proposed to be remitted/ incurred
4. In case money is to be remitted, a note on the purpose for remitting the money giving the details of remittee and the manner in which the sum remitted is generally proposed to be utilized
5. Copies of the latest IT Return along with Account Statements
6. Copy of the latest Assessment orders, if any in last five years
7. Details of pending prosecution launched by Income Tax Department, if any
8. Details of any proceeding initiated/pending for violation of FCRA regulations, if any
The applicant may give his e-mail id, phone number, fax number and complete address for correspondence.
For any clarification, the applicants may contact Shri Shailendra Kumar, DCIT-OSD (ITA-I), CBDT at (011) 23095479, 23093070, e-mail: shailendra.kumar82@nic.in
Find details at: http://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/news/permission-under-section-11-1-c-28-04-2015.pdf

http://www.incometaxindia.gov.in

Job position: Programme Coordinator – Emergency

Programme Coordinator – Emergency

SOS-Children’s Villages International

International Office - Asia
Location: Faridabad (India)
Last Date: May 08, 2015

Email: Asia.Recruitment@sos-kd.org

Website: http://www.sos-childrensvillages.org

SOS Children’s Villages International, International Office - Asia
needs
Programme Coordinator – Emergency

It is a non-governmental and non-denominational organisation entirely funded by private contributions. The objective of SOS Children’s Villages International is to help through Member SOS Children’s Villages Associations, orphaned and abandoned children regardless of their ethnic roots, nationality and religion by giving them a family, a permanent home and a sound basis for an independent life. We adhere to our Child Protection Policy for safeguarding children. The operations of SOS Children’s Villages International represents a round-up of 133 countries in which it is active and has under its wings 1539 projects including 491 Children’s Villages.

POSITION PURPOSE

The mission of the position is to:
Coordinate and support the emergency relief work.
Responsible to provide support in documentation of emergency programme such as humanitarian needs; Response planned/ taken and Community mapping.

JOB PROFILE

Ensure coordination with various stakeholders; understand the community through participatory way.
Fulfil all documentation needs of Emergency Relief Programme such as humanitarian needs, response planned/ taken and community mapping.
Provide support to identify situations that may increase risks for children and bring it to the notice of supervisor for corrective actions.
Coordinate the provision of structured activities that address the protection, educational and psychosocial needs of children and adolescents.
Coordinate with supervisor to ensure integrated programming/services delivery; develop programme curriculum (considering age, gender, disabilities, culture and relevancy).
Coordinate in community mobilization and volunteers’ work assignment.
Keep a track on monitoring & evaluation framework and its relevant indicators.
Provide support in initiating new family strengthening programmes.
Provide support in successful completion and documentation of the frame of action initiated for the Emergency Relief work

Essential Values, Behaviors and Skills:
Good verbal and written communication skills in English and local language.
Fair knowledge of Programme Development.
High interpersonal skills and team oriented
Good computer skills.
Willing to travel as and when required.

CANDIDATE PROFILE
Should have degree or diploma in Social Science or development related subjects
Should have experience of 3-4 years in programme. Experience in documenting and supporting the execution of emergency programme will be an added advantage.
Should have some knowledge of community development
Fair knowledge of UNCRC

Note: Initially this position is for Emergency Relief Programme in SOS Nepal. Based on need, it may be utilised for other locations.

How to apply

Salary will be commensurate with experience and will match industry standards. Interested applicants should send their application via e.mail to Asia.Recruitment@sos-kd.org latest by May 08, 2015. It is must for all the applicants to mention the ‘job-title’ in the subject line of e.mail while sending their application. Only short listed candidates will be intimated.

Odisha govt. announces raise in minimum wages

Odisha government on Friday announced a hike in the minimum wages of skilled, unskilled and semi-skilled workers based on the recommendation of the State Minimum Wage Advisory Committee.

While the minimum wage for an unskilled labourer has been raised to Rs. 200 from Rs. 150 per day, the semi-skilled workers will get Rs. 220 each instead of Rs. 170 a day, a government notification stated.

The skilled worker will get Rs. 240 daily, up from Rs. 190 earlier. The minimum remuneration of highly skilled workers has been raised to Rs. 260 from Rs. 205, it said. “The workers are in fact pilots of development. The state government is committed for their welfare,” Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said while announcing the new minimum wages on the occasion of International Workers’ Day.

The notification has given 60-day time for objections and suggestions on the announcement of minimum wages from trade unions, workers, stake holders and from the general public. The minimum wages were raised based on the recommendation of the State Minimum Wage Advisory Committee for raising the minimum wages of workers of different categories.

'Bad Words' NGOs, Activists Must Adhere to Public Interest to Regain Lost Meaning

In all democracies, the politician and the bureaucrat, who are two sides of the same governance coin, are seen as necessary evil. In India, the bureaucrat is pitied or censured or tolerated, while the politician is seen with utter contempt. In recent years, otherwise ‘good’ words have started assuming adverse connotations. India has been home, through the ages, to countless sadhus, sanyasis, and jeevanmuktas. Ramana and Ramakrishna are two among many recent names who come to mind; I dare say there are thousands of great yogis and pious men who are in meditation even today in every part of India—however, the word ‘Godman’ evokes a pejorative image, thanks to the shenanigans of a few scoundrels. India clearly was more secular in the first few decades after Independence. Has communalism raised its ugly head in recent years, only after the Constitution was changed to declare India ‘secular’—thanks to the efforts of vote-bank opportunists, masquerading as ‘secular’? In recent times, have the words ‘NGO’ and ‘activist’ assumed a negative image?

In any democracy, NGOs have a major role to play in social sectors— education, public health and so on; and also in organising opinion on major public policy issues. Society benefits from the presence of such agencies, which supplement the impersonal approach of the State, with attention given to specific local issues, with sympathy, understanding and local interest. The NGOs are expected to play a major supplementation role to the formal governance system— that is the theory. Indeed, India has benefited by a very large number of NGOs who have operated in all parts, in diverse fields, bringing understanding, succor and a local touch. However, partly due to official ‘support’, and other reasons, we have increasingly seen the spectacle of NGOs cropping up for non-altruistic purposes —mainly self-aggrandisement of socialites; indeed increasingly as vehicles for earning money; also lately as instruments to support political objectives—all contrary to the self-negating, public-purpose, altruistic nature of such organisations as they ought to be. Is this not to be expected in a society where people enter politics, in reality, to amass wealth through unethical means? Can anyone deny that this is largely the primary purpose of the ‘politician’?

The recent attention to Greenpeace and Ford Foundation has brought in the question of ‘foreign funding’ of Indian NGOs. Old-timers would remember how in the 60s and 70s, the PL 480 funds were used to ‘influence’ Indian policy, so that the Republic, as emerging then, would develop in the ‘right’ lines—that is to the liking of certain world powers. Major ‘think tanks’ had been set up in India to ‘guide’ Indian policy, with covert foreign funding—some of them continue to exist and try to influence public opinion through ‘research’ and ‘expert advice’. Many would recall the reach of agencies like CIA which have used various means, fair and mostly foul, to bring into their ambit senior politicians, bureaucrats, media persons—insiders are aware of all of this. There is no charity in international relations—self-interest is the mainspring. Indeed, many of the Bretton Woods and other post-War institutions were set up by developed countries as instruments for control over the newly emerging developing nations—he who pays the piper calls the tune.

India needs NGOs in different walks of life, particularly in social sectors and in rural development. ‘Activists’, civil society thinkers and opinion-makers are entitled to adequate room in a healthy society, and given the space for even promoting ‘contrary’ opinion —the ability to ‘guide’ society’s opinions should not be left exclusively to the government of the day. A couple of key elements, however, should not be lost sight of. The NGOs or activists need to be fully transparent—they are in public space. The public should have full view of their motivations, funding sources and modus operandi. Every foreign-funded NGO needs to have its books fully open, particularly in a country where so many political, communal and other security and sensitive issues abound. Note that the Homeland Security Department in the US looks at all cross-border and related domestic issues with a hawk eye, perhaps with hundred times the intensity and ruthlessness as applied by our internal security apparatus; also note that there have been no major security breaches in the US since 9/11.

The internal security apparatus naturally will test every inflow from the stand-point of public interest. This term cannot be defined to meet all circumstances—it is more a value-loaded perspective. The courts, of course, will moderate such scrutiny. The benefit of doubt, however, will have to go to the official assessment—one only can hope that it will be fair, unprejudiced. There can be no hard and fast rule— NGOs and activists need to conform to the concept of ‘public interest’ in its purest interpretation. Indeed, the author of this piece is an activist (perhaps in a ‘passive’ way), inter-alia having backed important PILs of significance, as also advocating that GM crops should be ushered in only after due care and study. The country surely needs many, many more NGOs and activists. tsrsubramanian@gmail.com

Subramanian is a former Cabinet Secretary

Source: http://www.newindianexpress.com/magazine/voices/Bad-Words-NGOs-Activists-Must-Adhere-to-Public-Interest-to-Regain-Lost-Meaning/2015/05/02/article2791094.ece

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Kolkata NGO designs Bio Toilets to battle open defecation



Bengal's Nadia to become first open defecation-free district in country, claims Mamata Banerjee

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday announced that April 30th will be observed as Nirmal Bangla Divas—an initiative to achieve open defecation-free districts in the state. According to the state government, West Bengal’s Nadia district is set to become country’s first district that has become freed of open defecation. “On April 30th, we will make a formal announcement of Nadia becoming first Indian district to earn Open Defecation Free (ODF) status. Hooghly and Bardhaman are placed on second and third rank respectively,” Banerjee claimed.

The state government has further claimed that it has planned to set up individual household latrines (IHHL) across 8.47 lakh households in 2014-15—the highest in the country. “As part of the Nirmal Bangla (Clean Bengal) Mission, as many as 3.47 lakh toilets were set up across Nadia. These were constructed not just in the interiors of Nadia, but also in the urban centres and townships. By March 2015, all households in the district had access to toilets,” an official statement said.

UNICEF rings alarm against open defecation

According to UNICEF, slow progress on sanitation and the entrenched practice of open defecation among millions around the world continue to put children and their communities at risk. Some 2.5 billion people worldwide do not have adequate toilets and among them 1 billion defecate in the open – in fields, bushes, or bodies of water – putting them, and especially children, in danger of deadly faecal-oral diseases like diarrhoea, claims UNICEF. India, with 597 million (half the population) practising open defecation, also has high levels of stunting. Globally, some 1.9 billion people have gained access to improved sanitation since 1990. However, progress has not kept up with population growth and the Millennium Development Goal target on sanitation is unlikely to be reached by 2015 at current rates of progress.

Green Sanitation Foundation

In the wake of this announcement, iamin contacted Green Sanitation Foundation, a voluntary organisation in Kolkata that works against open defection to find a solution to the lack of proper sanitation facilities in India. As we interacted with Green Sanitation Foundation’s director Sudip Sen, he shared the concept of‘green toilets’ with us. Sen’s organisation strives to improve hygiene and sanitation in India through the use of Bio Toilets.

What are Bio Toilets?

Green Sanitation Foundation has launched Bio Toilets. These toilets can convert human waste into a non toxic, non-contaminating water compatible substance by maintaining the environmental standards. The process of conversion is facilitated by the application of multi strain bacteria culture. This process involves the aerobic forms of bacteria. “The major advantage of these bio toilets is that they do not need a sewage system to operate. They treat solid waste and convert it to liquid form, which is harmless and does not contaminate groundwater, soil, etc,” said Sen. Here’s a video that features bio toilets:

https://youtu.be/wOrosqIt05k

Cost factor

As claimed by the NGO, the cost of installing a Bio Toilet ranges between Rs.25 - 30,000, which includes training on O&M, communication efforts, etc. “Multiple bio toilets will cost more. GSF is also working on developing solar powered community bio-toilets,” added Sen.

Source: http://www.iamin.in/en/jadavpur/news/kolkata-ngo-designs-bio-toilets-battle-open-defecation-58620

Check NGOs Seeking Govt Funds for Duplication: Maneka

Women and Child Development (WCD) Minister Maneka Gandhi today said that NGOs and welfare organisations seeking funds for government's schemes should be checked for duplication as many ministries end up funding them for similar purposes.

She asked MPs to identify genuine NGOs doing good work at a meeting of Consultative Committee of Parliament attached to the Ministry.

The WCD Ministry had recently come across a large number of fake applications under its "Support to Training and Employment Programme for Women" (STEP) scheme, aimed at providing employability skills to women.

"Government should assist the organisations in their task of skill development of women. We will try our best to ensure India's money goes to the best," Gandhi said.

The meeting was called to discuss various aspects related to skill training to women under STEP scheme.

Addressing the Members of the Committee, Gandhi said the training should not only be restricted to few areas like sewing, stitching and embroidery but should also include various diverse activities like making food items, rope making and knitting which are in demand and can generate easy economic opportunities for women.

She informed that the STEP scheme will be revived later this year and the proposals of projects will be uploaded on internet and if the proposals are rejected, the reasons thereof will also be shown.

Source: http://www.outlookindia.com/news/article/check-ngos-seeking-govt-funds-for-duplication-maneka/894084

The crackdown: Is the government really at war with NGOs?

The government's recent move to cancel the registration of nearly 9,000 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) for failing to provide details of foreign funding for three years starting from financial year 2009-10 clearly shows that it has intensified its ongoing major crackdown on non-profit organisation operating in the country. The move came soon after the government suspended the licence of Greenpeace India and put US-based Ford Foundation on a security watch list, necessitating government approval to carry out their activities in the country.

A few months ago, the home ministry said lobby groups such as Greenpeace were damaging the country's economy by campaigning against genetically modified food, mining and power projects.

The Ford Foundation was put on a watch list following accusation that it was providing funding to a local group run by an activist who is a Modi critic. This has given some fodder to Modi's critics to argue that the government's move to restrict the movement of foreign funding to local charities is an attempt to scuttle the voices of those, who oppose the government's economic agenda.

The sudden spurt in the number of circulars issued by the ministry of home affairs (MHA) against organisations registered under The Foreign Contributions Regulation Act, 2010 (FCRA) in the recent past has proved that the ministry has intensified its scrutiny of NGOs.

In December, an RBI circular listed NGOs such as Danish International Development Agency, US-based Mercy Corps, US, Netherlands-based Hivos International and US-based Climate Work Foundation and Greenpeace in a list of those whose funds should be monitored by banks. Any NGO receiving funds from them will now need prior permission of the MHA before they bring in the funds. Also, from April 1, all organisations registered under the FCRA have to reapply for licence within a year.

The previous Manmohan Singh government too issued notices to NGOs that hadn't filed their returns during 2006-2009. But critics say the crackdown has become more pronounced under the Modi government because it wants to stifle voices against its economic and growth agenda.

The government's supporters say this increased scrutiny is to safeguard national security. The significant spurt in cross-border terrorist activities over the last couple of decades, which reared its ugly head following a series of terror strikes including 9/11 attacks in the US and 26/11 carnage in Mumbai, has forced the government to track every penny that is flown to the country by NGOs and think-tanks to ensure that the money is not used to fund terrorist or secessionist activities.

The government suspect that most of these organisations misuse funds by indulging in money laundering and campaigning against development work.
The strain in the relationship between bureaucracy and the civil society in the country that is increasingly being based on mutual suspicion and hostility is also cited as a reason for the crackdown on NGOs, which activist groups accuse as an attempt to silence free speech, opposing views and dissent.

Both Indian and foreign donors are shying away from engaging with NGOs which work in governance, environment and human rights as the government is seen increasingly hostile to and suspicious about activities in the space supported by donor money.

The government's 'blacklisted' of foreign donors amply indicates that those working on environment issues and climate change, and those organisations which have an alternative vision and definition of growth elicit government ire more than others.

The fall in fund flow to the NGOs in the country in the recent past is also seen as a fallout of the deterioration in mobilising funds for charity and development aid because of the global economic recession as well as the projection of India as an 'emerging economic power'.

Following the intensified government scrutiny, donor entities are likely to go slow on their funding plans till the political opposition to the government's approach against charities becomes more visible and vocal in the public domain.

This may also lead to a situation where funding for NGO activities will become more decentralised—smaller donations from a large section of the civil society supporting social entities that genuinely pursue larger common good instead of a few big funders controlling fund flow.
While the government cannot be criticised for putting national security on the top of its agenda, whether voices of dissent should be stifled in a mammoth democracy like ours needs to be debated.

Source: http://www.businessinsider.in/The-crackdown-Is-the-government-really-at-warwith-NGOs/articleshow/47100618.cms

FAST TRACK CBDT APPROVAL FOR NEPAL SUPPORTING NEPAL EARTHQUAKE RELIEF

Responding to several requests for Earthquake Relief to Nepal, CBDT has come forward in fast tracking the procedure for giving approval for any NGOs wanting to spend money in that country. Vide a press release CBDT has promised to give approvals within 2 days. Normally the process is quite a long one and takes anywhere from 3-4 months.

All those NGOs interested may contact CBDT website for the procedure to be followed. Srr-Foundation have also provided copy of instructions on their website at following link:

BSE, two others plan CSR platform

The initiative ‘Sammaan’ would help corporates access implementing agencies, whose credentials have been verified, to carry out CSR works

New Delhi: A platform to help companies find implementing agencies for carrying out social welfare activities will soon be launched by leading stock exchange BSE along with industry body Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and think tank IICA.

The initiative ‘Sammaan’, launched in New Delhi on Wednesday, would help corporates access implementing agencies, whose credentials have been verified, to carry out corporate social responsibility (CSR) works under the companies law.

Under the Companies Act, 2013 certain classes of profitable companies are required to spend at least 2% of their three-year annual average net profits towards CSR activities.

BSE said in a statement it has collaborated with the two other entities to form the platform in order to enable companies undertake effective CSR. A recent analysis by BSE showed that there are 1,294 companies on the exchange that are required to make CSR spend under the law.

“There are an estimated 20 lakh implementing agencies registered in India. Corporates, especially the small and medium ones, will need assistance to identify an NGO that they can partner with for their CSR compliance,” the statement said.

Implementing agencies on Sammaan would provide clear and defined programmes, objectives, expected outcomes and budgets. “A Letter of Fulfilment provided by BSE to the corporate donors will increase the credibility of the implementing agencies and their programmes,” it added.

Source: http://www.livemint.com/Companies/9rNF60NgX5VQweX5pKWtwJ/BSE-two-others-plan-CSR-platform.html

Platform for ‘compassionate capitalism’ brings together corporates, NGOs

NEW DELHI, APRIL 29:

In an endeavour to usher in ‘compassionate capitalism’, the Bombay Stock Exchange, along with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs (IICA) has launched a CSR initiative called Sammaan.

Launching the platform here on Wednesday, President Pranab Mukherjee urged industry leaders to use their business acumen to add value to society at large. “You have a bigger purpose than to merely earn profits. Just as you add value to your shareholders’ wealth, it is equally important to add value to the society at large”, he said.

‘CSR nothing new’

He said the notion of CSR is not new to India. “Mahatma Gandhi had espoused the socio-economic philosophy of trusteeship. It provided a means for wealthy people to be trustees to look after the welfare of the common man,” he said, adding that CSR has gradually evolved into the corporate framework.

Speaking at the launch event, BSE’s non-executive Chairman S Ramadorai said by law, 1,294 BSE-listed companies are required to spend about ₹8,000 crore on CSR in 2015-16. Of these, 1,167 companies have a CSR budget of less than ₹10 crore, he said, adding that the platform can facilitate corporates in selecting, monitoring and bringing together NGOs for CSR projects CII President Sumit Mazumdar said “business cannot succeed in societies that are struggling,” and underlined two key social development enablers that CII will focus on – women & child development and public health & sanitation.

Sammaan will serve as an intermediary between corporate India and non-government organisations with regard to various corporate social responsibility projects. It will also provide corporates with a programme dashboard to monitor funding and progress of their CSR programmes.

Source: http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/companies/csr-platform-to-bring-together-corporates-ngos/article7154430.ece

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

CBDT Permission for Nepal on Fast Track

Tax-exempt NGOs wanting to take up earthquake relief work in Nepal need CBDT prior-approval for this. This permission normally takes 3-6 months. However, the CBDT today announced that the permission will be granted within two working days.

To get the permission you need to submit a completed application, setting out details of what you want to do, the area, and the amount to be spent. More details on this are given in AuditAble 12: Taxing NGO Programs Outside India.

Reference:

1. AuditAble 12: Taxing NGO Programs Outside India (www.AccountAid.net)

2. Sec. 11(1)(c) of Income Tax Act, 1961

3. CBDT Press Release dated 28-Apr-2015 (http://www.incometaxindia.gov.in/Lists/Press%20Releases/Attachments/359/CBDT-Press-Release-28-04-2015.pdf)

The cancellation of 9000 NGO’s by MHA

Dear All,

It is to bring to your notice that there are fresh media reports of the cancellation of 9000 NGO’s by MHA. We request you to not get panicked by this information as these are cumulative cancellations ever since the new FCRA 2010 was enacted and no fresh cancellation has taken place. These cancellations are due to most of them not filing their annual returns by the due dates and many of these organizations did not intimate the MHA about their change in addresses. Even upon contacting these organizations, the MHA never received any response from these organizations. Attached is the cancellation order within this email order http://mha1.nic.in/pdfs/FCRACAncellationOrder_270415.pdf and for further updates we will keep providing the needed information.

Regards
VANI team

Attention: JAN AUSHADHI: GENERIC MEDICINE CAMPAIGN.



The Jan Aushadhi scheme launched by the Department of Pharmaceuticals, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, Govt. of India aims to make available quality generic medicines at affordable prices to all through special outlet known as Jan Aushadhi store opened/to be opened in each district of all the States. The new business plan approved by the Department of Pharmaceuticals in August, 2013 brought out it no. of changes to make the campaign a real success.
For More Information please visit: http://janaushadhi.gov.in 

CSR, tax laws not favourable for international aid

Indian companies are mostly extending aid in Nepal by leveraging their own businesses as a goodwill gesture

Indian companies, led by ITC Ltd, Bharti Airtel Ltd and SpiceJet Ltd, have rushed to the aid of earthquake-ravaged Nepal, and many more are looking for ways to provide help.

For now, Indian companies can mostly extend aid by leveraging their own businesses or services as a goodwill gesture.

For instance, ITC is supplying the National Disaster Relief Management (NDRM) centre, which is involved with disaster relief, with 200,000 food packets and nine tonnes of biscuits and ready-to-eat food.

“We will be looking at deploying more material aid based on the need. For now, since we are food manufacturers, we could address this need urgently,” said an ITC spokesperson as the death toll from Saturday’s quake and scores of aftershocks crossed 4,000.

Airtel offered free calls on its network from India to Nepal for 48 hours from Saturday.

SpiceJet said it is offering free flights from Kathmandu to India to people who cannot afford to pay the full fare. In addition, it is helping non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and relief organizations to travel to Nepal in a flight that has been put together for relief measures.

Mobile wallet provider Paytm said it will match the donation by its customers and will put the contributions into a relief fund run by the Indian government’s Nepal-specific relief fund.

The companies’ move marks a departure from past practice in two respects: so far companies have responded to disasters in India, and they have done so by extending financial aid.

Noshir Dadrawala, chief executive of the Mumbai-based Centre for Advancement of Philanthropy, a not-for-profit working in the area of corporate social initiatives, said companies will not be able to tap their corporate social responsibility (CSR) funds for international aid, as government rules require that these funds be spent on CSR activities in India.

Besides the restrictions on CSR placed by the Companies Act of 2013, charitable funding outside of India is not easy to carry out under the Income Tax Act, 1961, and it is regulated by the Reserve Bank of India.

“Every trust, society or section 8 (previously section 25) company that enjoys tax exemptions is required to apply its income for charitable purpose only in India. For a charitable organization to send funds out of India, it would require the permission of the Reserve Bank of India and the funds could only be used “for a cause in which India is interested”, says Dadrawala.

While companies are routing their relief material through government agencies such as NDRM or through the ministry for external affairs, which in turn sends the material with the Indian Air Force, Indian-registered NGOs may not find it easy to engage in relief operations in Nepal, even when they have the expertise.

Goonj, an NGO that works in disaster relief, has found its work hampered by these rules, and has been unable to send immediate relief material even though it is ready.

“We have good experience in disaster response and given the scale of the disaster, there is a great need to mobilize resources quickly. We have two truckloads of material—medicines, blankets, tents—ready to be deployed. But we are awaiting permission from the home ministry and external affairs ministry,” said Anshu Gupta, founder, Goonj.

Ketto.org, an online crowdfunding platform, has created a page for raising funds for Nepal relief, and its co-founder Varun Sheth said it raised close toRs.6 lakh in just a day. “We are trying to get as many individuals to raise funds as possible. Currently, about 21 individuals are campaigning for funds, including actor Kunal Kapoor,” Sheth said. They are aiming to raise about Rs.25 lakh in the course of the month and the money will be used to assemble disaster kits which will contain tarpaulin, mats, soaps, blankets, etc. Ketto will work with CARE India, an NGO that deals with disaster preparedness and response among other issues. CARE India in turn hopes to supply these items to CARE Nepal.

CARE India CEO Muhammad Musa said the NGO has mobilized 1,500 kits that will support 9,000 people. The kits contain essential items such as tarpaulin for making tents, water, hygiene kits, etc. Like Goonj, CARE is also awaiting permission from the government to send the material across to Nepal.

Dadrawala said cross-border laws are complicated when it comes to providing aid, and suggested the rules be relaxed in major disasters like the Nepal quake in order to allow aid to flow freely.

Officials at the ministry of corporate affairs refused to offer a comment for this story.

Dadrawala said given the restrictions, the best way to deploy funds would be to route them through a local unit in Nepal or through the Prime Minister’s relief fund.

Donations to the Prime Minister’s relief fund are acceptable under CSR rules. The Prime Minister’s relief fund is being deployed to give compensation to the kin of those who have died in the Nepal earthquake.

Source: http://www.livemint.com/Companies/nakU1vpalqWSVM6Ti0hJJM/CSR-tax-laws-not-favourable-for-international-aid.html

Licenses of 630 Odisha NGOs cancelled

Days after including the US-based charity Ford Foundation in the list of entities that can’t fund local organisations without permission, the Union government has cracked down on nearly 9,000 NGOs that receive foreign funds, including 630 from Odisha.

The home ministry has cancelled the registration of these NGOs, saying they have failed to comply with rules.

A home ministry letter says that 10,343 associations had not submitted annuals returns since 2009-12. Notices were sent to them to file returns by October last year, but only 229 associations responded.

The registration of the remaining 8,975 organisations has been cancelled.

The largest number of NGOs which came under the hammer of Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) are from Uttar Pradesh followed by Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Delhi and West Bengal.

In Kerala, more than 527 association licenses were cancelled while in Karnataka 805 were cancelled. Maharashtra also saw a huge clamp down on NGO where nearly 950 licenses were cancelled while in Bihar and Odisha 644 and 630 NGOs came under the radar.

None of the NGOs in Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura file returns.

The Foreign Contributions Regulations Act requires organisations receiving foreign funds to give details of the contributions received their source and the purpose for which they were used, every year.

NGOs and lobby groups have been on the government’s radar since last year after a report by the Intelligence Bureau said they had been stalling economic growth by campaigning against power projects, mining and genetically modified food.

Last week, the home ministry placed the Ford Foundation on its watch list, saying it wanted to ensure that its funds were utilised for “bonafide welfare activities without compromising on concerns of national interest and security”.

Earlier, Greenpeace India was barred from receiving foreign funds. The government alleges that it has “prejudicially affected the economic interest of the state”.

Source: http://odishasuntimes.com/125184/licenses-of-630-odisha-ngos-cancelled/

No Ban On 8,975 NGOs: Govt Clarifies

Minister of State Home, Kiren Rijiju on Tuesday said that there is no ban on 8975 NGO’s rather they are just on watch list.

Earlier a report came that government has cancelled licences of nearly 9,000 NGOs entities for violation of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).

In an order, the Home Ministry said that notices were issued to 10,343 NGOs for not filing annual returns for the year 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.

The notices were served on October 16, 2014 saying that the NGOs should file their annual returns within a month specifying amount of foreign funds received, sources of such funds, for which purpose it was received and in manner in which such foreign contribution was utilised, according to a Home Ministry notification.

Out of the 10,344 NGOs, only 229 replied.

There was no reply from the remaining NGOs leading to cancellation of their registration issued under FCRA, the notification issued yesterday said.

Among the registration cancelled 8,975 NGOs include 510 NGOs against whom notices were sent but returned undelivered.

Government earlier had suspended the FCRA licence issued to Greenpeace India and frozen their seven bank accounts for various alleged violation of laws.

The government last week ordered that funds coming from the US-based Ford Foundation should not be released by any bank to any Indian NGOs without mandatory permission from the Home Ministry. 

NGOs need to declare funds, there's nothing wrong in that

The Centre’s move to cancel the licenses of over 9,000 NGOs has come in for controversy.

What has made headlines is the government’s decision to suspend the license of Greenpeace and block its foreign funds.

Another decision that has caused a lot of debate has been the Centre’s move to place the Ford Foundation on its watchlist.

Congress leaders have called the moves “fascist” and said the government is harming the interests of the poor.

It’s time for a little perspective. The government placed only those NGOs on notice that have violated FCRA – Foreign Contributions Regulations Act. The act says organisations receiving foreign funds have to detail the amount of funds they have received and to what purpose they were used at the end of each year.

Clearly, the government is asking these NGOs to declare their sources of income. Is there anything wrong in that?

No. If they were corporate houses, we would be attacking the Centre for not carrying out an audit. So why these double standards? But unfortunately, instead of understanding India’s concerns, the NGOs, especially Greenpeace, are claiming they are being ‘victimised.’

The Congress too has jumped into the fray on the NGOs side. This is hypocrisy. It was in 2012 the UPA commissioned an IB report against some NGOs who it believed were fermenting tensions against the Kudankulam project in Tamil Nadu.

The report found that eight out of 11 donors to the Tamil NGOs were funded by European-based donors. Why? We need to know. So let us be clear here. The government is not saying all foreign donors have nefarious designs and it is not saying NGOs should not receive foreign funds. All it is asking is that the funds be declared.

If Greenpeace etc. have a problem, they must be told to follow the law. Otherwise, they can pack their bags and leave. India can manage quite well without them.

Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/indiahome/indianews/article-3059579/QUICK-EDIT-NGOs-need-declare-funds-s-wrong-that.html

Govt's indiscriminate crackdown on NGOs will affect the 'marginalised’

They are called cafeteria sessions. At lunch time, Greenpeace fund-raisers wander among hundreds, sometimes thousands, of young men and women packing the cafeterias of Indian companies. It’s not a good idea to name these companies. Greenpeace’s activities include forest preservation, renewable-energy promotion and fighting on behalf of local communities. These appear to be popular causes among young professionals. Donations of Rs 300 to Rs 500 constitute about 80% of Greenpeace’s Indian contributions, generating Rs 7 of every Rs 10 the NGO receives. This year 30,000 Indians have contributed.

Small donations, from cafeteria sessions and city streets, continue to pour in, and this is where the government crackdown on Greenpeace is hurting. With its seven bank accounts suspended, there is no way to receive the money.

The government accuses Greenpeace of a raft of violations related to foreign contributions, procedures and income tax. Some tax questions: What does the funding of mangrove plantations in the Sunderbans have to do with your work? What does payment to a photographer have to do with your work? Suspend accounts, and keep the query flood coming. “It’s quite a brilliant way of decimating us,” says one staffer.

Greenpeace is not known to avoid a fight, but the disquiet is evident: How long can it withstand State hounding? It is among 15 organisations that must now get prior approval from the Union home ministry before receiving money from abroad. This onslaught has set off a quiet turmoil: A host of other non-profits that receive foreign contributions and substitute for the government in places and situations where it is absent are preparing for crackdowns and reviewing procedures, or — in the case of Sutradhar, a decade-old, non-profit educational resource centre that trains teachers — shutting down.

Since Indians are not generous enough, Sutradhar survives on foreign generosity. Unlike Greenpeace, it does not want to fight, or even answer questions. No longer will artists, storytellers, teachers and caregivers gather at its centre in Bengaluru. The greatest loss will be to children who live on the city’s margins, including the poor and disabled.

At the other end of the spectrum is the Infosys Foundation, whose funding includes healthcare, destitute care, cancer clinics and toilet construction in remote regions of several Indian states. It is in a quandary because unlike many other NGOs, the Infosys Foundation does not accept money from donors — it receives an annual grant from Infosys Ltd, the IT giant, which is now, technically, a foreign company. That means both the foundation and its recipients must have clearance under the Foreign Contributions Regulation Act (FCRA), 1976.

Foreign funding is a term made fraught by India’s government — unless the organisation receiving money from abroad happens to be the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

“You must remember that the FCRA came into being during a dark period of Indian history,” a former bureaucrat with extensive experience with the law told me. “It was born out of a paranoid mind, Indira Gandhi’s.” Until 1976, foreign funds were not regulated. The FCRA gave New Delhi the powers to block funds, of intrusive auditing and powers of prosecution. It became progressively intrusive.

Intended or inadvertent default — even if caused, say, by officials not putting papers submitted in the relevant file — does not matter, the former official said. The government’s actions may not be fair or stand scrutiny of the law, but they reflect its policies. On September 30, 2014, as many as 10,331 NGOs receiving foreign aid were warned of the FCRA licence cancellation for not filing annual statements.

The return of such paranoia betrays a great insecurity of a supposedly confident government. India cannot hope to better the lot of its poorest people — more than 200 million, for example, are without an officially recognised ‘asset’, neither bicycle, nor radio — without help from NGOs. Of course there are spurious ones, but the ones I refer to serve as a bridge between the state and its people.

That is the role played by one of the oldest foreign NGOs, the Ford Foundation, which entered India in 1952 at the invitation of then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru (which, to Nehru haters, makes it suspect), part-funded the Green Revolution and is now on a watchlist for reasons of ‘national security’. It has handed out $508 million to 1,250 institutions in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka, in areas as diverse as dryland framing and folklore conservation. Among its aims — incendiary to the insecure — are ‘to combat the socioeconomic marginalisation of tribal communities, women and adolescent girls, and religious minority communities’. In a country where emerging middle-class discourse would rather ignore the ignored, it’s easy to see why the focus on minorities is particularly abhorrent and why the Centre quickly responded to the Gujarat government’s anger.

Gujarat accused the Ford Foundation of ‘direct interference…in the internal affairs of the country and also of abetting communal disharmony in India’ and of ‘a religion specific and Muslim supportive criminal code (sic) and also keep the 2002 riots incident alive’, a newspaper reported.

The Danish government’s aid agency, DANIDA, is one of the 14 under watch. An example of its work: Providing drinking water and toilets to 35 Tamil Nadu panchayats. The state government’s contribution: 12.7%; DANIDA’s: 78.19%. The agreement was signed by the government of India, which, since 1963 received many interest-free loans for industrial development from DANIDA, repayable after 35 years. India made full use of such generosity when it was a basket case. It is no longer an economic wreck, but millions are still mired in hopelessness. The new paranoia can only keep them there longer.

Source: http://www.hindustantimes.com/samar/govt-s-indiscriminate-crackdown-on-ngos-will-affect-the-marginalised/article1-1341290.aspx

India cancels registration of 9,000 charities

New Delhi: India has cancelled the registration of nearly 9,000 charities for failing to declare details of donations from abroad, as New Delhi tightens surveillance on foreign-funded non-governmental organisations in the country.

The crackdown comes days after the government suspended the license of Greenpeace India and put US-based Ford Foundation on a security watch list, ordering government approval of any of its activities in the country.

A “cancellation order” issued by the home ministry and uploaded to its website late on Monday said the government had cancelled the registration of 8,975 associations because they did not declare details of their foreign funding for three years starting from 2009/10.

The order, dated April 6, did not name the groups whose licenses were cancelled but said they had not filed the “mandatory annual returns”.

The government on Tuesday came under attack from Congress and NGOs for its decision to scrap licenses of more than 9000 NGO’s for allegedly violating Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), accusing it of being “revengeful” and targeting selectively.

Congress leaders said certain non-governmental organisations (NGOs) which were critical of government polices were on the firing line.

Senior Congress leader Verappa Moily said the present government is “very revengeful” and its actions amounted to curbing the movement of NGOs.

“The government is merely drawing inferences.this is not in the interest of the country. Creating an image that all the NGOs are not good is not good for the country,” he said and added that if there was an erring NGO, it should be prosecuted.

Greenpeace activist Priya Pillai, who was prevented from going abroad to the UK, said that her organisation had been publishing its accounts on its website.

“We are not being targeted for our accounts. The main issue why Greenpeace and some other NGOs are being targeted is because it has a voice of dissent. Because they have been working for tribal rights, land rights of communities and this has been an area of concern for the government.

“The government is not ready to listen to the voice of dissent in the country,” she said.

However, Minister of State Kiren Rijiju defended the decision, saying “action has been taken after getting specific inputs.”

He was responding to questions from reporters about Government cancelling licenses of the NGOs and freezing seven bank accounts of Greenpeace India for alleged FCRA violations.

The US-based Ford Foundation has also been put in the ‘watch list’ last week by the Home Ministry last week which directed that funds coming from the international donor should not be released by any bank to any Indian NGO without mandatory permission from it.

In its order, the Home Ministry said notices were issued in October last year to nearly 10,000 NGOs to file their returns for 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12 within a month.

The NGOs were asked to specify the amount of foreign funds received, sources of such funds, for which purpose it was received and the manner in which such foreign contribution was utilised.

However, only 229 NGO’s filed their returns leading to cancellation of their registration issued under FCRA, the notification said.

Congress leader Rajiv Shukla asked the government to spare the NGOs who were working for good cause.

Congress MP Gaurav Gogoi criticised the government move claiming that the NDA regime has become intolerant to criticism.

“Government is trying to rein in critical voice. It has become intolerant which is not good,” he said.

BSP leader Mayawati said her party had no issues if the government was acting against those NGOs which were not following laid-down norms.

Source: http://gulfnews.com/news/asia/india/india-cancels-registration-of-9-000-charities-1.1500742 

FCRA licenses of 10,117 NGOs cancelled, UP and AP top the list

Here is a look at data from some of the major states in which several NGO licenses were cancelled:


After temporary suspension of Greenpeace India's foreign contribution license, and lodging Ford Foundation on a watch list to monitor its activities, the Government of India on Sunday cancelled the licenses of 8975 NGOs for failing to file annual financial returns in the past few years. The official orders are dated April 6, 2015. This is in addition to 1142 NGOs from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana whose licences were cancelled on March 3, 2015. The total number of NGOs cancelled during the present NDA regime for violation of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) norms now stands at 10,117.

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had issued notices to 10,343 NGOs on October 16, 2014 seeking an explanation as to why they had not filed financial returns for the years 2009 to 2012. Only 229 NGOs responded according to MHA orders. MHA is reportedly examining their replies "on case to case basis".

The administrative action against NGOs is seemingly a part of the NDA government's campaign to ascertain the amount of foreign funds received by NGOs in India, the source of funding and how the funds are being utilized.

“No reply has been received from the remaining associations numbering 8975”, said the Home Ministry’s order which was communicated to the NGOs, their respective jurisdictional district magistrates and the RBI. The MHA has cancelled license of these NGOs under Section 14 of the FCRA.

Many NGOs have alleged that the government had not given enough time for them to respond to notices. This is however not the first time that a government in power at the centre is cancelling licenses of NGOs, though the scale this time is much larger than in previous occasions. In 2012, the UPA government had cancelled license of almost 4,000 NGOs for the same reason.

- See more at: http://www.thenewsminute.com/article/fcra-licenses-10117-ngos-cancelled-and-ap-top-list#sthash.iEKjeBlu.dpuf 

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Ministry of Home Affairs cancels FCRA licences of 8,975 associations

NEW DELHI: In yet another massive crackdown on NGO's and associations accepting foreign funds without complying with the regulation of filing annual returns, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has cancelled the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) licences of 8,975 associations from different parts of the country including delhi, Mumbai and Andhra Pradesh. This is the largest ever cancellation order with more than 12,000 NGO registered with home ministry.

In its order signed by under secretary Anand Joshi, the Home Ministry states, "no replies have been received from 8975 associations." Among the associations who licenses were cancelled include Don Bosco School Damra in Assam, Osmania University in Hyderabad and Bethel Church association in Bihar besides many other christian NGO. As per the order, "the home ministry had issued notices to 10343 associations all over India for not filing mandatory annual returns in FC-6 form for the period 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011 and 2012." 

Under section 18 of FCRA, 2010, every person who has been granted a certificate under this act shall give for every financial year beginning 1st of every April within nine months of the closure of the financial year, to the secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs. The information is sent in form FC-6 mentioning the amount of each foreign contribution received, the source from which and manner in which such foreign contribution was received and the purposes for which and manner in which such foreign contribution was received and the purposes for which and manner in which such contribution was utilised by it. 

The Home Ministry had issued notices to these organisations in October last year through speed post asking why the registration under FCRA not be cancelled for non-filing of returns, giving them 30 days from the date of the notices to reply. However, only 229 associations replies to the show cause notices which were then examined on case to case basis. The remaining 8975 associations also include 510 associations to whom notices were sent but returned undelivered and 632 institutions from whom no reply has been received within the stipulated period. 

Earlier, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) had suspended the FCRA licenses of Greenpeace on the ground that the NGO was violating the various provision of FCRA and was also engaing in financing Indian NGO which were filing writ petitions. Recently, the foreigners division of the home ministry also put Ford Foundation,, another reputed NGO on the prior permission list. This means that all its funds coming into India will first have to be scrutinized and cleared by the home ministry.

Source: http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/ministry-of-home-affairs-cancels-fcra-licences-of-8975-associations/articleshow/47072906.cms

Home Ministry's crackdown on NGOs: Uttar Pradesh leads the list

NEW DELHI: The largest number of Non Government organisation (NGOs) which came under the hammer of Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) are from Uttar Pradesh followed by Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Delhi and West Bengal. In its largest ever cancellation order issued recently, the home ministry struck down the licenses of 8,975 organization all over the country after they failed to respond to government's notice issued in October last year. 

Among the organization that faced the government's ire in Delhi were Delhi Karnataka Sangh, which initially also ran the famous Kannada School in Lodhi estate. Delhi Library Network, a digital library which also finds mention in government's digital India plan. Several christian organization based in Delhi such as Diocesan Education Scheme, Diocese of Delhi community development Fund, renowned Diabetes Foundation (INDIA) run by Dr Rekha Sharma and Delhi Yoga Sabha were few other NGOs from Delhi whose licenses were cancelled for not complying to FCRA norms. 

Action against as many as 391 organisation from Delhi were initiated by MHA. An analysis of NGOs carried out across the country also showed that of the 38,000 NGOs registered with the home ministry in more than 20 States, only 10 percent have submitted annual returns. None of the NGOs in Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura file returns. In Assam alone, the licenses of 126 such organisations have been cancelled. According to home ministry officials, Andhra Pradesh is another major is another major state where large number of NGOs are registered, 

In March this year, home ministry had cancelled the licenses of 1142 organisations from Andhra Pradesh while in its second order issued recently, 275 such NGOs faced the strict action. Among them were minority education trust in the name of Aiiman (AF) education society and Amazing Grance Ministeries. From UP, the prominent associations were Dr Zakir Hussain Foundation in Allahabad, Indian Institute of Technology Lucknow, Khadi Gramudyog Ashram , Moradabad, Sakya tibetan Society, Dehradoon. 

World renowned NGO from Tamil Nadu, World Vision of India license was also cancelled. However, a senior home ministry official also explained that the NGOs itself asked the ministry to cancel the license since they had another NGO registered in similar name. The 229 replies received out of more than 10,343 notices issued in October last year, the largest number replies came from Karnataka. The southern States contributed to highest number of NGOs where the license were scrapped. 

In Kerala, more than 527 association licenses were cancelled while in Karnataka 805. The State of Maharashtra also saw a huge clamp down on NGO where nearly 950 NGOs license were cancelled while in Bihar and Odisha 644 and 630 NGO came under the radar. Under section 18 of FCRA, 2010, every person who has been granted a certificate under this act shall give for every financial year beginning 1st of every April within nine months of the closure of the financial year, to the secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs. 

The information is sent in form FC-6 mentioning the amount of each foreign contribution received, the source from which and manner in which such foreign contribution was received and the purposes for which and manner in which such contribution was utilised by it. 

Govt cancels licences of nearly 9,000 NGOs receiving foreign funds

New Delhi: In yet another crackdown on NGOs receiving foreign funds, government has cancelled licences of nearly 9,000 such entities for violation of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).

In an order, the Home Ministry said that notices were issued to 10,343 NGOs for not filing annual returns for the year 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.

The notices were served on 16 October, 2014 saying that the NGOs should file their annual returns within a month specifying amount of foreign funds received, sources of such funds, for which purpose it was received and in manner in which such foreign contribution was utilised, according to a Home Ministry notification.

Out of the 10,344 NGOs, only 229 replied. There was no reply from the remaining NGOs leading to cancellation of their registration issued under FCRA, the notification issued yesterday said.

Among the registration cancelled 8,975 NGOs include 510 NGOs against whom notices were sent but returned undelivered. Government earlier had suspended the FCRA licence issued to Greenpeace India and frozen their seven bank accounts for various alleged violation of laws.

The government last week ordered that funds coming from the US-based Ford Foundation should not be released by any bank to any Indian NGOs without mandatory permission from the Home Ministry.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

FCRA Cancellation Order_270415




Foreign funding: Govt cancels licences of nearly 9,000 NGOs

In yet another crackdown on NGOs receiving foreign funds, the government has cancelled licences of nearly 9,000 such entities for violation of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).

In an order, the Home Ministry said that notices were issued to 10,343 NGOs for not filing annual returns for the year 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.

The notices were served on October 16, 2014 saying that the NGOs should file their annual returns within a month specifying amount of foreign funds received, sources of such funds, for which purpose it was received and in manner in which such foreign contribution was utilised, according to a Home Ministry notification.

Out of the 10,344 NGOs, only 229 replied.

There was no reply from the remaining NGOs leading to cancellation of their registration issued under FCRA, the notification issued yesterday said.

Among the registration cancelled 8,975 NGOs include 510 NGOs against whom notices were sent but returned undelivered.

Government earlier had suspended the FCRA licence issued to Greenpeace India and frozen their seven bank accounts for various alleged violation of laws.

The government last week ordered that funds coming from the US-based Ford Foundation should not be released by any bank to any Indian NGOs without mandatory permission from the Home Ministry.

Source: http://indianexpress.com/article/india/govt-cancels-licences-of-nearly-9000-ngos

Govt cancels licences of 8,975 NGOs for failing to file annual returns

NEW DELHI: After suspending the FCRA registration of Greenpeace India and putting foreign donor Ford Foundation on the watchlist, the government has now cancelled the licences of 8,975 NGOs for failing to file annual returns for the years 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.

In a cancellation order issued on Sunday, the Union home ministry recalled that it had issued notices to 10,343 NGOs on October 16, 2014, stating that they should file their annual returns within a month, specifying amount of foreign funds received, sources of such funds, the purpose for which these were received and the manner in which such foreign contribution was utilized. However, only 229 NGOs reverted to the home ministry. Their replies are being examined on case to case basis.

"No reply has been received from the remaining associations numbering 8975," said the home ministry order communicated to the NGOs, district magistrates of the concerned districts where the NGOs are based and RBI.

"..in exercise of the power conferred by Section 14 of the FCRA 2010, the Central government hereby cancels, for violation of Section 18 thereof, read with Rule 17(2) of Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Rule, 2011, the certificate of registration of 8975 associations...which includes 510 associations to whom notices were sent but returned undelivered and 632 associations from whom no reply has been received to the notices within the stipulated period," said the order.

Source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Govt-cancels-licences-of-8975-NGOs-for-failing-to-file-annual-returns/articleshow/47075077.cms

Govt cancels licences of nearly 9,000 NGOs

New Delhi: In yet another crackdown on NGOs receiving foreign funds, government has cancelled licences of nearly 9,000 such entities for violation of Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA).

In an order, the Home Ministry said that notices were issued to 10,343 NGOs for not filing annual returns for the year 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.

The notices were served on October 16, 2014 saying that the NGOs should file their annual returns within a month specifying amount of foreign funds received, sources of such funds, for which purpose it was received and in manner in which such foreign contribution was utilised, according to a Home Ministry notification.

Out of the 10,344 NGOs, only 229 replied.

There was no reply from the remaining NGOs leading to cancellation of their registration issued under FCRA, the notification issued yesterday said.

Among the registration cancelled 8,975 NGOs include 510 NGOs against whom notices were sent but returned undelivered.

Government earlier had suspended the FCRA licence issued to Greenpeace India and frozen their seven bank accounts for various alleged violation of laws.

The government last week ordered that funds coming from the US-based Ford Foundation should not be released by any bank to any Indian NGOs without mandatory permission from the Home Ministry.

Source: http://zeenews.india.com/news/india/govt-cancels-licences-of-nearly-9000-ngos_1586106.html

Home ministry cancels registration of 9,000 foreign-funded NGOs

The Modi government has cancelled the registration of nearly 9,000 foreign-funded NGOs that failed to file their annual returns.

In an order, the home ministry said the registration of 8,975 NGOs that had neither filed their annual returns for three years (beginning 2009) nor given any explanation for the delay, stood cancelled with immediate effect. The ministry also directed the district magistrate concerned to “manage the assets” of these NGOs in any manner “considered necessary and in public interest”.

The order, quietly issued on April 6, came days before the Centre’s effort to tighten the grip on prominent NGOs that receive foreign funds like Greenpeace India and the Ford Foundation.

The security establishment has been advocating a hard line on foreign-funded NGOs for years. But it was only after a change of regime at the Centre that the home ministry started the groundwork for the crackdown.

As part of this exercise, the ministry had issued notices through September and October to 10,343 organisations across the country that had not filed their annual returns for 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12.

The Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA) requires every registered NGO to submit its returns annually, irrespective of whether it received foreign funding in that year.

Only 229 organisations had responded to home ministry’s showcause notice. These responses “are being examined on a case to case basis”, the order by the home ministry’s deputy secretary Mahendra Kumar said. A home ministry official said a decision on how to deal with them was yet to be taken.

As per rules, the ministry can levy a penalty of up to 5% of the foreign funds received, or Rs 50,000 — whichever is higher.

In the previous Manmohan Singh government too, the home ministry had issued notices to over 21,000 NGOs that hadn’t filed their returns from 2006-2009. But it eventually cancelled the registration only in 4,138 cases where letters from the Centre were returned undelivered by postal authorities.

Source: http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/home-ministry-cancels-registration-of-9-000-defaulting-ngos/article1-1341658.aspx