3,292 NGOs, institutes haven't disclosed foreign donations yet: Govt
As many as 3,292 NGOs and institutes, including some top academic centers like JNU, IGNOU, IIT Delhi and Madras, have not disclosed their annual foreign donations and expenditure between 2011-12 and 2016-17, Home Ministry has said. The Ministry said in its notice that those associations which have not filed the annual returns on the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act portal must file it immediately online.
Those whose names figure in list include Infosys Foundation, Delhi University, JNU, Indira Gandhi National Open University, Panjab University, University of Rajasthan, Madras Christian College, Indian Council Of Agricultural Research, Indian Council of Medical Research, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi and Madras, besides others.
"The status of submission of mandatory annual return will be reviewed after 15-days of issue of this notice (electronically/physically) in respect of your association, being dispatched to your known addresses." "If you fail to submit any of missing return(s) within this period, appropriate action under Section 10 of the FCRA, 2010 would be initiated against your association for the said violation," Ministry said.
No organization is allowed to receive funds from abroad unless it is registered under the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA). It's mandatory under the law for such organizations to submit income/expenditure statement to government annually else their registration is cancelled. The renewal of registration for receiving foreign funds cannot be granted unless annual returns are uploaded on FCRA website.
Trustee of Infosys Foundation, Ramadas Kamath, said they receive donations only from Infosys Ltd and doesn't come under purview of FCRA. He said the government had made an amendment to FCRA regulations, which states that even though FII holding in share-capital of a listed Indian company is over 51%, the donations given by such company to charitable trust won't be considered as a foreign-contribution.
Kamath said this amendment was bought in by the government with retrospective effect and pursuant to this amendment, Infosys Foundation has written to Home Ministry to derecognize Infosys Foundation under the FCRA provisions. A senior IIT Delhi official said, "We are exempted from registration under the FCRA as IITs are set up through an Act of Parliament and are audited by the CAG."