NGOs have no fundamental right to receive ‘unbridled foreign contributions’

The Government has told the Supreme Court that NGOs have no fundamental right to receive “unbridled foreign contributions” without regulations.

The Centre was responding to petitions challenging amendments made in the Foreign Contributions Regulations law in 2020.

The petitions had argued that the amendments severely restricted the use of foreign funds by the NGOs for their activities and their transfer.

The petitioners had also found it cumbersome that the new law expected 23,000 NGOs to open accounts in the main branch of the SBI in the Capital to receive their foreign funds.

The Government contended that the amendments were meant to ensure that foreign funds were not used to impinge upon functioning of parliamentary institutions, political associations, academic and other voluntary organisations and individuals in India.

“The legislation has also prohibited acceptance and utilisation of foreign contribution or foreign hospitality for any activities detrimental to the national interest and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto,” said an affidavit filed by the Government through the Ministry of Home Affairs in the apex court.

It said the “sovereignty and integrity of India including public order and public interest is an essential dimension of the Act since its inception”.

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Printable version | Jan 20, 2022 11:50:46 PM |

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