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Grip tightened on NGOs

The idea of creating the institution of Non Government Organizations (NGOs) was first mooted at the sessions of the UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva. The Commission after conducting debate on the proposal passed it and expressed its wishes to all member countries to establish NGOs in their respective countries. In this way NGO institution came up in our country. Taking into account the size of population of our country, it soon became a much desired profession to open NGOs and associate people and personalities with these. Over a lakh of NGOs are reported to have mushroomed in India alone. These NGOs claim that they are assisting the Government in many ways like collection of data, access to the ground levels, conducting study into the aspects of social, educational and economic problems of various segments of society etc. Many of these NGOs are funded by the Social Welfare Department.
However, what happened is that in due course of time fake NGOs came into existence which became instruments of various crimes like illegal transfer of money or fake fund raising and then misappropriating huge funds and thus hoodwinking the Government. Political parties began misusing these NGOs for their selfish aggrandizement.
When Modi Government came to power, it took serious note of the functionality of NGOs. It should be said without reservation that some of the NGOs were indulging in anti-national activities and yet continued to receive financial support from the Government or illegal remittances from foreign inimical agencies. All this was brought under scrutiny and some harsh decisions were taken in the interests of the nation. Strict conditions were imposed like proper accounting of funds, proper observance of rules regarding receiving funds from foreign sources, proper registration and documentation of NGOs, a review of their performance, and their periodical performance reports etc. In this process thousands of fake and non-functional NGOs were eliminated. Now further stringent steps have been taken to ensure that the NGOs are not fake and that their bank accounts are validated officially. They are supposed to submit bank information like the bank branch, code, account number, IFSC etc through FC 6 form. A few NGOs named are Rehmat E Alam Hospital Trust Anantnag, Rotary Club of Mumbai Midwest, JK Trust, Bombay, Goonj, Madina Education and Charitable Society, Nagaland Bible College, Indian Institute for Nature and Environment Study etc. As many as 1,222 NGOs across the country have been directed by the Home Ministry to validate the bank accounts in which they receive foreign contribution, failure of which will invite punitive action. The statistics reveal that in November 2016, the Government had directed more than 11,000 NGOs to file applications for renewal of registration by February 28, 2017. Of the above, 3,500 NGOs have filed applications for renewal and hence the registration of more than 7,000 NGOs were deemed expired due to non-filing of renewal applications. This seems quite legal because the need to fulfil all formalities to become legitimate NGOs.

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